It’s nearly 24 hours before opening night of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Michaela Ellingson, Junior Repertory Company director for Dancers’ Workshop, is providing young dancers with some thoughts to chew on.
“This is a really great opportunity to play with your characters … push it more. This is an opportunity to really go for it,” Ellingson says at dress rehearsal.
What some of Ellingson’s dancers might not know is that this performance marks the dance instructor and choreographer’s full circle trajectory.
As a young dancer, Ellingson cultivated her skills at Dancers’ Workshop. One of the first performances she danced in as a young child was DW’s The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
“I was a mouse back when I was like six or seven,” Ellingson says with a laugh. Then, as a freshman in high school, she played Mr. Tumnus in the same production.
Ellingson says her experience as a young dancer helped inform the way she guides budding dancers today. Those experiences have also helped her to hold onto the magic that distinguishes Dancers’ Workshop’s youth-centered performances.
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