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About The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current | View Entire Issue (May 9, 2016)
THE DAILY ASTORIAN • MONDAY, MAY 9, 2016
Fine arts: Performers ‘love doing the kids’ shows’
Continued from Page 1A
“Giselle” takes place in an
autumnal German Rhineland in
the Middle Ages, and tells the
story of a peasant girl, Giselle,
fancied by nobleman Duke
Albrecht, who is betrothed to
Bathilde, daughter of the Duke
of Courland. Albrecht dis-
guises himself as Loys, a hum-
ble villager, in an effort to woo
Paige Wilkey, a dancer with
the Oregon Ballet Theatre,
played the title role. Her part-
ner Alexander Negron played
“I hired them to come and be
the stars,” Wall said.
Negron, from New York
City, started dancing at 8 after
outreach school Ballet Tech vis-
ited his class to encourage more
involvement in the arts. Wilkey,
from Los Angeles, has been
dancing since 3. Both are soon
headed for the corps de ballet in
“I love doing the kids’
shows,” Negron said, adding
that while adults know how
to sit and be quiet, the kids are
responsive, wearing emotions
on their sleeves.
In the ballet, Albrecht’s
deception is discovered by
Hilarion, a local gamekeeper
also after Giselle’s affections.
Hilarion was played by 16-year-
old Joe Justice from Warrenton.
Justice was 13 and having issues
at school when his principal
learned he liked to dance for fun
Photos by Edward Stratton/The Daily Astorian
From left, 6-year-old Lexey Wilson, her mother Cassie and twin sister Evie take in a
Friday performance of “Giselle” by the Astoria School of Ballet at the Liberty Theater.
The outing, her daughters’ first ballet, reminded Cassie Wilson of going to see “The Nut-
cracker” in Portland with her sister and grandmother.
and introduced him to Wall, who
gave him a scholarship. Wall
described Justice, her only older
male dancer, as another rising
talent destined for bigger stages.
for the show
The school’s yearly show is
announced in December. The
40 or so dancers at the school
continue classes, while practic-
ing for the big performances in
May. A volunteer corps, includ-
ing many of the dancers’ par-
Alexander Negron and Paige Wilkey, two dancers on loan
from the Oregon Ballet Theatre, prepare to play the title
roles of Duke Albrecht of Silesia and peasant girl Giselle,
in an Astoria School of Ballet production of “Giselle” Fri-
day at the Liberty Theater.
ents, creates the sets and does
Peggy Boisvert, who played
Giselle’s mother Berthe, also
helped create 54 costumes.
“It’s a lot of time,” Wall said.
“It’s a lot of energy.”
The shows provide the danc-
ers a chance to perform for big,
enthusiastic crowds, including
some of their peers from school
and family. Gloria Reeves said
she traveled from Oklahoma
to Astoria speciically to see
granddaughter Josie Reeves,
a second-grader at John Jacob
Astor Elementary School.
“I am impressed, because I
was stricken with stage fright,”
said Josie’s mother, Kimberly
Chaput. “But she thrives on it.”
Another dancer who seemed
to thrive on live performances
was Wall’s 4-year-old daughter,
Hudson Sandel, who played a
“When I was a little kid, I
couldn’t do it,” Sandel said, add-
ing she was excited to get a irst
performance under her belt.
Daryan Gres, a dancer with Astoria Ballet Company, re-
ceives some makeup around her eyes from Amanda Ca-
sian before a performance of “Giselle” at the Liberty The-
Gamekeeper Hilarion, played by Joe Justice from War-
renton, performs in front of the Duke of Courland, left,
played by Sen Incavo, and his daughter, Bathilde, played
by Daina Ploghoft. Justice was drawn to ballet as an outlet
after getting in trouble at school. More photos online at
Nobleman Duke Albrecht of Silesia, played by Alexander
Negron, dances with peasant girl Giselle, played by Paige
Wilkey. The two Oregon Ballet Theatre dancers were hired by
Director Margaret Wall to be the stars of the Astoria School
of Ballet’s production of “Giselle” at the Liberty Theater.
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