Ventura County Ballet brings the Nutcracker to VCMC Pediatric Oncology Patients

Dancers from Ventura County Ballet performed excerpts from The Nutcracker.

It’s always hard being sick as a child and missing favorite activities with friends and family. But there’s one special holiday tradition local kids don’t have to miss – The Nutcracker!

Dancers from Ventura County Ballet performed excerpts from The Nutcracker at Ventura County Medical Center’s Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Infusion Center on Tuesday, November 14. The free performance for young patients, their families and VCMC staff has become an annual event.

Ventura County Ballet’s full production of the world-famous Nutcracker ballet will take to the stage at Oxnard Performing Arts Center

Kathleen Noblin, Ventura County Ballet founder and executive director, explains, “Ventura County Ballet has always been committed to bringing the best in live dance to Ventura County audiences. As we prepare for our 25th Anniversary season of The Nutcracker, we are delighted to again bring a preview to VCMC.”

Noblin continued, “It’s our mission to bring world-class ballet to the community and to bring the joy of dance to children who might otherwise not be able to experience it. The young patients at VCMC not only enjoyed The Nutcracker excerpts but also met our dancers, tried on a pointe shoe and were up close and personal with the wonder of ballet.”

VCMC Hematology/Oncology Medical Director Dr. Francisco Bracho added, “We’re so grateful to Ventura County Ballet for bringing this special performance to us. Experiences like this are a wonderful way to help our patients and families have a sense of normalcy in their lives and respite from a focus on being sick.”

The performers were:

Clara – Kirra Anderson, 13, Cabrillo M.S., 8th grade
Fritz – Emma Hansen, 12, DeAnza Academy of Technology and Art, 7th grade
Columbine – Sylvie Watts, 14, Ventura H.S., 9th grade
Harlequin – Jonah Tillery, 16, Ventura H.S., 11th grade
Soldier – Carter Gillespie, 17, Newbury Park H. S., 12th grade

Ventura County Ballet is a non-profit organization bringing world class, professional dance performances to our community. They provide top quality performing opportunities and instruction to hundreds of young people as a springboard to universities and careers with dance companies. Through scholarships and outreach, they bring the joy of dance to children throughout our area.

The full production of The Nutcracker at Oxnard Performing will be on Saturday, Dec. 9, at 1:00 and 5:00 pm, Sunday, Dec. 10, at 2:00 pm.

The Nutcracker is truly the lifeblood of Ventura County Ballet as it is for ballet companies the world over. It supports our entire season and enables us to bring a wide range of other works to local audiences. We hope as many people as possible will enjoy our 25th anniversary production of The Nutcracker as we return to the massive stage of Oxnard Performing Arts Center for the first time since 2019.

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