Claire Higgins
Summit Daily News

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June 7, 2012
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Denver ballet company brings a classic tale to Leadville's Tabor Opera, with some modern updates

The Tabor Opera House is taking a contemporary twist on a classic fairy tale and bringing it to the stage. Denver's Ballet Ariel will perform "Cinderella" Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the historic venue in Leadville.

Director Ilena Norton's original choreography offers a mix of old and new, blending classical and contemporary images to create a magical world in this "inspired retelling" of the "Cinderella" ballet.

"It's a more modern version of the classic story, but it still follows the original score," Norton said.

One of the main updates are Cinderella's evil stepsisters, who are a little more hip hop and contemporary. One of them is more like Madonna and the other is a cross between Marilyn Monroe and Carol Burnett.

"Children love the stepsisters - they're hilarious," Norton said.

Cinderella, danced by Damara Cedillo, stays true to the character we know with classic choreography.

In a final ballroom scene, "ballroom dancers perform traditional, graceful waltzes, while the stepsisters cavort around the stage to attract the prince," Norton said.

Instead, Cinderella captivates the prince, danced by Kevin Burke, and they perform a romantic duet until the clock strikes twelve.

Performing at the Tabor Opera House is exciting for Norton because of "the really wonderful history." "It's a special experience because of the theater itself," she said.

For this performance, the company is using the opera house's original backdrops for the stage. Norton said this adds a "neat, historical flavor" to the modern show.

Ballet Ariel is a professional ballet company in Denver. "We present original ballets that combine classical tradition and images of contemporary culture," Norton said.

Tickets for the performance are $15 for adults and $5 for children ages 13-18. Children under 13 are free. To purchase tickets, call (719) 486-8409 or go to

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The Summit Daily Updated Jun 7, 2012 06:07PM Published Jun 7, 2012 06:01PM Copyright 2012 The Summit Daily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.