Arts & Culture

Ballet Manila ushers in the magic of Christmas with Cinderella

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — Experience classic romance, magic, and happy endings through dance as Ballet Manila stages the undying story of the world’s most iconic princess, Cinderella, on December 25 to 30 at 4:00 p.m. at the Aliw Theater. Featuring all-original choreography by the company’s CEO and Artistic Director Lisa Macuja-Elizalde, Ballet Manila’s re-telling of its all-time hit is perfect for kids and kids-at-heart who want to bask in a bit of magic and romance to usher in the holiday season.

This year’s staging of the show is part of Ballet Manila’s Holiday Cheer Series, a new annual Christmas tradition of the company will be a delightful mix of heartwarming music, special effects, creative digital projections, and will also feature the students of the Lisa Macuja School of Ballet.

“It is our first full-length ballet since the pandemic shrunk the number of dancers in the company. So we are adding outstanding students from the school to add to the cast. It will be different as well as we will be using the new stage facilities – especially the LED screen of the newly refurbished Aliw Theater. So the experience will be more high-tech with special effects and animation,” Lisa said.

Like fans all over the world who have grown to love this classic fairytale, the prima ballerina has a strong attachment to Cinderella. Aside from it being Macuja-Elizalde’s first major choreography work in 2016, the prima ballerina herself strongly believes that light will always triumph over darkness and that dreams do come true.

“I guess you could say I did have my own Cinderella story in real life. I was the little girl with dreams of becoming a ballerina. And against a lot of odds, a sprinkling of luck, and loads of hard work, I have been fortunate to live my dream,” Lisa said. Achieving their own “happy ever after,” principal dancers Abigail Oliveiro and Mark Sumaylo reprise their roles as Cinderella and Prince Charming respectively, but this time as real-life husband and wife.

The performance is set to dazzle with Cinderella’s transformation from a soot girl who endures the wicked ways of her stepmother and stepsisters, to an enchanting princess ready to attend the grand ball at the palace – thanks to her Fairy Godmother. Ballet Manila’s take on this classic story will also feature a selection from the Prokofiev’s score, with scene-stealing moments of tiny animals transformed into magical creatures and characters, along with thrilling dance sequences to be performed by the Ballet Manila performing company and the Lisa Macuja School of Ballet students.

To book your tickets, visit Ticketworld.

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