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Cinderella dances back to the Hult Center

Karen Richards
Cinderella, with her fairy godmother, left, watches as dragonflies and pixies perform at the Hult Center in Eugene

The Eugene Ballet dances back to the Hult Center this weekend, after 20 months away from the stage. KLCC attended a dress rehearsal of Cinderella.

It’s a big cast and crew, including professional dancers, academy students and a pit orchestra. Everyone’s excited to perform live, but this show isn’t new to the Eugene Ballet. Artistic Director Toni Pimble told KLCC, “Cinderella was one of the first ballets that we did, 40 plus years ago … 1981, before the Hult Center was even built, we did shows in Sheldon High School auditorium.”

Pimble said they even toured to Roseburg that year. This crew won’t travel, due to the pandemic, but Associate Technical Director Earendil Biskup says some of the props will. She gave the carriage a more soft and rounded look this year, and said, “It’s going to Jackson, Wyoming next week.”

While the professionals are vaccinated and won’t wear masks, Pimble said the children will, adding, “Some of the parents have actually designed the masks for the kids to wear, which is really sweet.”

Audience members must show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test for this weekend’s shows. Pimble said the company is also rehearsing the Nutcracker, which will play seven times in Eugene this year. She hopes, now that vaccines will be available to children five and up, that families will feel more comfortable to see the traditional holiday show.

Karen Richards has been a KLCC reporter since the fall of 2012.