The Northern California Ballet Company lost everything in last November's Camp Fire – costumes, drops, sets – leaving its annual performance of The Nutcracker in jeopardy.
“It just wasn’t going to happen,” said Artistic Director Trudi Angel. “Or so we thought.”
Even as many of the troupe’s dancers had also lost their homes and belongings, they wanted the show to go on.
“I got calls from all my dancers, especially the young ones, crying and saying ‘we have to have this, the community said it was such a bright spot’” Angel recalled.
Thanks to help from dancers and theatre groups across the world, the Paradise-based troupe will be presenting its annual holiday performance of The Nutcracker next weekend.
“It gladdens my heart like you cannot imagine,” Angel said with a smile in her voice.
Sacramento's Broadway at Music Circus is among those offering help. Seventeen of the company’s volunteers are making the costumes.
“Right now we’re trying to get the new stuff done,” said lead-stitcher Nila Coats. “We have five sheep, three cooks, one gingerbread girl and a few tutus that… um… well, they’re going to be finished tomorrow,” she declared, wrinkling her brow.
The effort is being met with gratitude from the Northern California Ballet Company.
“I have a hard time staying unemotional,” said Artistic Director Trudi Angel. “The tears want to flow.”
Better late than never, the Northern California Ballet Company will present the Nutcracker January 18th through 20th at the State Theatre in Oroville.