Last Tuesday (Dec. 16), Donald Young School in Emo offered quite the special treat to the community: their very own production of the holiday favourite, “The Nutcracker.”
A far cry from the regular Christmas concert, this special adaptation of the original story, “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King,” under the direction of Katherine Williams, was extremely well-received by a gymnasium filled to overflowing with family, friends, and community residents.
The story is about a young girl who receives the gift of a nutcracker from her godfather. After the guests have left for the evening, Marie (Emma Dykstra) falls asleep and is transported into a Christmas fantasy.
The Nutcracker (Alyssa VanDrunen), now life-size, takes Marie on a magical tour of a world filled with chocolate-filled streets and candy canes that dance. The Nutcracker and his soldiers then battle the evil Mouse King and his little mice.
After their triumph over the mice, Marie and the Nutcracker travel together to the Kingdom of Sweets, where she sees the Sugar Plum fairies, flowers that dance, and all kinds of wonderful treats.
Sadly, as in most fantasies, the dream comes to an end. In Donald Young School’s version, Marie awakens from her dream and finds herself by her Christmas tree with her beloved Nutcracker.
The whole school was involved in this special production. Everyone had a part, whether it was as the main characters or the fairies, the mice, the dancing Arabs, the sheep herders, the Russian bakers, the Chinese tea party dancers, the colourful flowers, the camel, and the choir.
The students from JK-Grade 8 were assisted by Mr. Enns (the Mouse King), Pastor Conrad Dueck (who subbed for his son as Judge Drosselmeier), and four assistants, who almost stole the show as the dancing candy canes.
“The DYS staff and students would like to extend a huge thank-you to Katherine Williams for making this production possible!” enthused DYS principal Kerri Tolen as she presented Williams with a small token of their gratitude.
She also thanked the talented group of music students who opened the evening with a performance on the guitar and with solos, duets, and even a trio on the piano.
The evening came to a conclusion as Tolen announced the winners of the silent auction and door prize, thanked the audience for coming out on such a chilly evening, and wished everyone a safe and happy holiday.