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BALLET AT POLY

The Brooklyn Paper
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Since 1980, members of the Vicky Simegiatos Dance Company have been sharing their love for ballet with the Brooklyn community by offering performances to the public.

This Dec. 22 and 23, they will perform "The Nutcracker" in Bay Ridge choreographed by Simegiatos and her daughter Matina and set to Tchaikovsky’s music.

The dance company’s cast of students and teachers will be joined by two special guest stars: Jenifer Ringer and Charles Askegard, two world-renowned principal dancers from the New York City Ballet.

Playing the roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier, these two professional artists will give these young students, whose ages range from 10 to 20, an incredible opportunity to perform with the world’s best, and provide Bay Ridge balletomanes with a production studded with New York City Ballet dancers right in their own backyard.

The Simegiatos company’s affordable ticket prices are possible because all of the dancers, designers, rehearsal assistants and choreographers are not paid, according to company board member Karen Shapiro.

"We do this strictly for the love of dance," said Shapiro.

With studios in Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst and Sunset Park, the non-profit company strives to enrich Brooklyn’s cultural education while giving young and talented students the opportunity to receive dance training for free.

Led by Vicky Simegiatos, the company’s founder, and Matina - who is an alumni of the School of American Ballet and has had an extensive career in the ballet world performing in the New York City Ballet as well as on Broadway, the production expects to not only achieve professional quality, but the Richard Perry Theater at Poly Prep, where "The Nutcracker" will be staged, supplies the "perfect setting," said Shapiro.

Vicky Simegiatos Dance Company presents "The Nutcracker" on Dec. 22 and 23 at 7 pm in the Richard Perry Theater on the campus of Poly Prep Country Day School, 9216 Seventh Ave. at 92nd Street in Bay Ridge. Tickets are $25-$35. For more information, visit the Web site www.vspac.com or call (888) 286-0365.

- Giacomo Maniscalco
Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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