PEORIA — Peoria Ballet will perform “Alice in Wonderland & Paquita” at Five Points Washington on April 5 and 6.
“Paquita” will start off the program. Guest master teacher Maqui Manosa spent a week at the Peoria Ballet in January to prepare for the performance. Manosa works with ballet companies throughout the country on classic ballet productions. “Paquita” is visually stunning with dances that have remained intact for more than 100 years. The ballet is more than 150 years old and features upbeat Spanish music.
The second portion of the show will feature an all new production of “Alice in Wonderland” created by Peoria Ballet Artistic Director Jorge Laico, who was born in the Philippines and received his dance training at Manila Metropolis Ballet before joining Philippine Ballet Theater. During his 18-year professional dance career in the United States, he danced with numerous ballets. He later taught at the Rock School of Pennsylvania Ballet, North Carolina School of the Arts, Pennsylvania Governor School of the Arts and Cirque du Soleil.
The music to “Alice in Wonderland” is contemporary and whimsical. New sets and costumes have been created for the production, including a large teapot for the Door Mouse, and a tea party table complete with cupcake chairs and a glow-in-the-dark Cheshire Cat. The lighthearted ballet features a number of charming characters, including the White Rabbit, tap-dancing flamingos, hedgehogs, butterflies and a dodo bird.
After the 1:30 p.m. performance April 6, audience members may purchase an additional ticket to meet the dancers and sit at the tea party table with Alice and her friends.
In addition to the three performances at Five Points Washington, the production will also be performed at various public venues, including schools, nursing homes and retirement communities. The public performances are part of the ballet’s mission to engage the community and expose children and adults to the performing arts by offering a low-cost outing. Tickets for community performances are $5 or $2 for students who qualify for the subsidized lunch program.