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Nutty Nut Presents

Choreography by W. Earle Smith, Artistic Director

Overture Center for the Arts • December 22, 2012 Music............................................................................Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky Choreography and Stage Direction..............................................W. Earle Smith Set Design.......................................................................................Joseph Varga Costume Design............................................................................. Tracey Lyons Additional Costume Design........................................... Karen Brown-Larimore Lighting Design..................................................................... Kenneth Ferencek Wig and Make-Up Design.................................................................... Jan Ross

Set construction and scenic painting by Hawkeye Scenic Studios, Construction Center for the Performing Arts (CLO), I. Weiss Chris Bonner Kathleen Rock Billy Larimore

Jeff Macheel Tracy Doreen Dietzel Jen Trieloff

Jenny Bonner Jim Schaeffer Brian Weinkauf

The sets and costumes for The Nutcracker were acquired through a generous grant from American Girl’s Fund for Children. Stage labor is represented by the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Local 251 in Madison, WI.

Cover image courtesy of Andrew Weeks Photography. Nutty Nut


Su pr e m e Com m a n der

W. Earle Smith, Artistic Director W. Earle Smith was born in 1961 to an American mother and a Kenyan father, who were both young college students at the University of Hawaii. When his father left for Harvard, Mr. Smith and his mother stayed behind. His father ultimately returned alone to Kenya and Smiths’s mother remarried an Indonesian oil manager, moving the family to Jakarta when Smith was six. Shortly thereafter, he returned to Hawaii, where he was brought up largely by his grandparents. The family lived in a small apartment - his grandfather was a furniture salesman and an unsuccessful insurance agent and his grandmother worked in a bank - but Smith managed to get into Punahou School, Hawaii’s top prep academy. Smith attended Columbia University, but found his brief foray into Indonesian culture inescapable. During his free time, he became an apprentice with the little known Qui-Gon Jinn School of Indonesian Dance, performing in church basements and at community festivals throughout the city. During one such performance, his troupe encountered a surly band of Irish step dancers and a dance-off ensued. Smith’s natural artistic talents proved valuable as he choreographed the 20 minute Battle Dance on the spot and his troupe emerged breathless and victorious. Seeing dance as his true calling, Smith immersed himself in studying dance of all kinds, from Bollywood to Jookin, eventually discovering that his charm and charisma made him popular with both teachers and fellow students. Hungry for power, Smith ultimately chose to align himself with ballet, finding that the meek and obedient nature of the dancers allowed them to be the perfect tools for his own self-promoting agenda. He soon gained a reputation for being a ruthless taskmaster, once demanding that a young ballerina with a particularly shiny set of pearly whites have every other tooth extracted because, as he said, “Her smile was too ‘cheese whiz’ for my ballet. No one should shine brighter than my artistry.” UW Health’s Voice Clinic has In his later years, Smith’s work became darker an international reputation for and more foreboding, as he choreographed excellence in the care of voice such ballets as Dracula, Day of the Dead: A Tribute to Tech Week, and his most celebrated problems. We offer leadingwork, The Dark Side of the Force. Nevertheless, edge technology, diagnostics his popularity soared throughout the galaxy, and treatment for performers, earning him two Emmy awards, a gold medal singers and actors of all ages. at Varna, a 2011 Best of Madison (Most Call (608) 263-6190 or visit Lyrical Choreographer), a 2008 MTV Teen Choice award and an appointment by Emperor Palpatine as the Official Choreographer for the Empire’s Annual Talent Roundup. Smith currently resides on the Death Star with several Wookie slaves. 2

Madison Ballet


Don’t be silenced...

Biogr a phi e s

Jacob Ashley Killed in 1935 in a motorcycle accident, Jacob Ashley miraculously returned from the grave to a second lifetime of travel and derring-do. He spent several of his formative years as the youngest lieutenant in the British Army, stationed in Cairo.On his final mission, his Bedouin guide was killed by a stampede of elephants. The intrepid lieutenant—extremely dehydrated and delirious from the harsh conditions—successfully led his regiment to a self-proclaimed victory, declaring a nondescript sand dune the new capitol of the British Empire. In his later years, he opened a bustling falafel restaurant near Times Square, hoping to feature himself in nightly bellydance shows. After a misunderstanding with the Russian owner of a dance school with an extremely thick accent, Jacob enrolled in ballet classes, but continues to come to class bare chested with a hip scarf and finger cymbals. Brittany Benington Born in Southern California, which immediately disqualified her as a potential princess (her first true desire) Brittany Benington determined that the only way she could wear a tiara on a regular basis was to pursue a career in the world of ballet. Her love of the beach, shopping, surfing and spray tans, however, were at odds with the demands of the ballet world, which prefers pale skin and absolute dedication to the art. Her desire to perform trumped her need to surf and shop, however, so off she went to dance classes. Her first inspiration came from a Ballerina Barbie that she received at the tender age of five. She continues to draw inspiration from that same Barbie, and one day dreams to choreograph her very own Barbie-inspired ballet for which donations are being accepted. Contributors will receive a complementary tiara as thanks. She continues to receive unconditional support and love from her, often times, radical parents. Rachelle (Chocolandra) Butler If you have to ask who she is, you aren’t really worth her time. In place of a biography, Ms. Butler requests demands the following: I need San Pellegrino and only green M&M’s in my dressing room, Refreshed daily. I will be greeted with 5 dozen white roses 5 minutes after every performance, no more no less. I will always have first dibs on the rosin box. I require an assistant at each side of the stage to provide me water and dab my forehead before and after I enter and exit the stage. I will be massaged following each performance by a crew of 4 swarthy Greek men bearing perfumed oils and peeled grapes. I will be provided with a small child whose sole duty is to buff by calloused feet and bandage my blisters. Kisses! Nutty Nut


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Genevieve Custer Weeks Nickname: Dew-dew-drop. Talent: Underwater basketweaving. Best described as: silly, sweet, and sympathetic—always ready to lend an ear for a fairy friend in need. Personality: Has a go with the flow attitude, but she can be a little wishy-washy. Favorite treat: water chestnuts and bubble tea. Known for: Her upbeat—at times offbeat—way of looking at things. Pet peeve: water pollution and dry skin. Cool quirks: Training tadpoles to blow bubbles and adding dewdrops to spider webs. Special hangout: the babbling brook. Fashion statement: the wet look. Favorite flower: water lily. Noteable quote: “You’ve heard of a dewdrop, well this is a don’t drop.” Katy Fredrick Born in Shanghai, China, Katy Fredrick dreamed of being a star of the big screen. She had her film debut as an “Ewok” in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi and was later seen as a “Weeping Angel” on the Doctor Who series. After the taste of stardom she craved more time in the spotlight but dedication to her education brought her to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. She soon discovered her love of dance at the Hufflepuff hula club. After only three months of training under Natalie Portman’s Black Swan ballet teacher she received a full contract with New York City Ballet. Her favorite roles include “third Willi from the left” in Giselle, “Peasant” in Sleeping Beauty, and “understudy” for Serenade. She is very excited to now be performing with Madison Ballet and would like to thank Albus Dumbledore, Matt Smith, and of course George Lucas for forming her into the artist she is today. Marguerite Luksik Born in a mining town, Marguerite Luksik was raised by adoptive parents and groomed for a life of politics. Turning from the life her parents chose for her, she began her training at an early age with the now defunct Royal Ballet of Alderaan and received further training under the tutelage of the prestigious Hutt family where she expanded her repertoire and wardrobe into more exotic areas. Her career has taken her to such glamorous locations as Ukraine, Australia, Hoth and Cloud City. She received rave reviews for her performance along side her twin brother at Yavin 4, where she also met her future husband Han. Career highlights include the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, and the destruction of the Galactic Empire. She would like to dedicate this performance to her father, who could not be here, and to the memory of Old Ben, who truly was her only hope.


Madison Ballet

Biogr a phi e s


Jessica Jaye Mackinson Jessica J Mackinson hails from the Shire of the Cheeseheads, located in the Glen of the Woodland Creatures. Jessica has a wide variety of talents and hobbies, which include ballet, eating bacon, pole dancing, knitting, drinking an entire bottle of wine in one sitting, and quoting 90s movies. She has also successfully completed numerous Cosmo Quizzes, a few Sudoku puzzles, and one Leo Tolstoy novel. Jessica is the Madison area’s only accredited unicorn trainer. Specializing in classical fantasy dressage performance, her knowledge of these magical beasts confounds even the most seasoned riders. Business has been slow for some reason, but she hopes it will pick up soon. Jessica is thrilled to be toe-dancing with the Madison Ballet and wishes everyone a Happy Festivus. Phillip Ollenburg You know you love me. I know you care. Just shout whenever, and I’ll be there. You want my love. You want my heart. And we would never, ever, ever be apart. Are we an item? Girl quit playin’. We’re just friends. What are you sayin’? Said there’s another as you look right in my eyes. My first love broke my heart for the first time. And I was like, baby, baby, baby oh. Like, baby, baby, baby noo. Like, baby, baby, baby ohh. I thought you’d always be mine (mine). Baby, baby, baby ohh. Like, baby, baby, baby noo. Like baby, baby, baby ohh. I thought you’d always be mine (mine). I’m gone. Yeahh, yeah, yeah. Yeahh, yeahhh. Now I’m all gone. Yeahh, yeah, yeah. Yeahh, yeahhh. Now I’m all gone. Yeahh, yeah, yeah. Yeahh, yeahhh. Now I’m all gone, gone, gone, gone. I’m gone. Shannon Quirk In lieu of a bio, Shannon Quirk has decided to share her inspiration for this evening’s performance spoken by none other then American ballet’s greatest asset, George Balanchine. “In my ballets, woman is first. Men are consorts. God made men to sing the praises of women. They are not equal to men: They are better.” No offense Cody. Yu Suzuki Yu Suzuki, the love child born of an illicit affair between an exceptionally beautiful and talented Geisha and three time world champion sumo wrestler, was smuggled via a JAL 747 cargo plane to New York City. She was discovered at JFK by an unscrupulous, yet very well connected talent agent who recognized her incredible talent (she emerged from the cargo hold kicking her legs high overhead to “New York, New York” playing on her Sony Walkman tape player.) Through years of excruciating study, whipped (literally) into shape by this talent agent (to whom she is forever grateful but still suffers a bit from Stockholm Syndrome) she became the shortest, youngest, and first Asian member of the world famous Radio City Rockettes. Once there, she discovered her true passion, the ballet, and was able to break away, escape to Chicago and now performs under her alias, Yu Suzuki. Nutty Nut


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Brian Jamie Roethlisberger

Born in the rustic pastures of rural Wisconsin, Brian knew he was destined to become a starlet at an early age. When he wasn’t frolicking through vacant cornfields giving free concerts to cows passing by, he could be found in his room writing up future Grammy, Tony, and Oscar acceptance speeches and/or in the sandbox, eating sand. After an embarrassing trialand-error period of missed field goals, strikeouts and tae kwon do beatings, his mother enrolled him in his first dance class. It was there that he refined his inner jazzerina, spread his spirit fingers, shot up some alesebesques, perfected the everimportant air bite, and found his life’s calling. At the ripe age of 10, he finally got his big break playing Oliver Twist in the Verona Area Community Theatre production of Oliver. He had officially arrived. However, it seems as though he may have peaked too early after being subsequently cast as a goose, Sheep Shepherd #3, and the color “Red” in later productions. Nonetheless, he continued to pursue his dreams of one day performing professionally. After meeting with the Oracle (also known as W. Earle Smith), Brian took his first ballet class and began to hone his technique, rather than flailing about like a car crash. Later, he danced professionally as a trained monkey with Sacramento Ballet, learning new meaning to the term ‘slave labor,’ and performed for the extremely elderly with Holland America Cruise Line. Now living in an overpriced cardboard box in rat-infested New York City, Brian is proud to be living the dream. He would like to dedicate this performance to Britney Spears who taught him how to be stronger than yesterday, and to Whitney Houston, who taught him that it’s not right, but it’s ok.

If it’s happening, It’s here.




Madison Ballet

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McKenna Collins, Apprentice

McKenna Collins has sported the Packer Green and Gold on the sidelines for the past 5 years as the lone professional Packer Cheerleader. Often confused with the other individual on the Packers with long, flowing golden locks (Clay Matthews), McKenna was appropriately indignant when she was passed over for the Suave Shampoo endorsement. As a result, she hung up her pom pons and joined Madison Ballet where green leotards and gold tights put a smile on everyone’s face. At the conclusion of her ballet performances, McKenna likes to lob foam cheeseheads out to the audience as a tribute to her former days of glory. She still hasn’t been able to curb her insatiable desire to meet Aaron Rodgers and enters every contest possible to win a date with him. She is positive her perseverance and commitment to the Green and Gold are sure to win him over and she will one day rejoin the Pack, marry Aaron, and live happily ever after as Mrs. Rodgers in Mr. Rodgers neighborhood.

Cody E. Olsen, Apprentice

You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go. So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life’s a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.




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