TJC presents its 29th annual ‘Nutcracker’ ballet | TJC

TJC presents its 29th annual ‘Nutcracker’ ballet

The Tyler Junior College Academy of Dance will present its 29th annual production of the classic holiday ballet, “The Nutcracker,” Friday-Sunday, Dec. 1-3, in Wise Auditorium on the TJC main campus.

Performance times are:
• 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1
• 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2
• 2 and 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 3

All seats are reserved. Admission is $25 for VIP reserved (front, center orchestra section), $20 for premium (side and mid-rear orchestra), and $15 for main (rear orchestra and balcony). Main seating is $10 for seniors ages 65 and over, TJC students and children under age 12.

Tickets are available online at or by calling 903-510-2099 to purchase tickets or pick them up between noon and 4 p.m. Fridays in the Wise Auditorium box office.

The production is under the direction of Carolyn Hanna, director of the TJC Academy of Dance. 

Assistant choreographers are Shurrell Wiebe and Thereza Bryce-Cotes.

“‘The Nutcracker’ is such a beautifully magical ballet,” Hanna said. “I love changing the choreography each production, so every year there’s something new to see.

“This year we have more than 150 dancers and actors, and you can definitely feel the excitement on the stage. These dancers have been rehearsing since September, so the end result will be something quite remarkable. With the TJC Academy of Dance, TJC Dance Department and other excellent dancers from around East Texas, we are delighted to present this production to the community every December.”

Principal dancers are Lilit Hogtanian and George Sanders from Ballet Memphis.

Hogtanian is from Los Angeles where she began her ballet training under Yuri Grigoriev. She joined Ballet Memphis in 2017. She is a graduate of the Academie de Danse Princesse Grace in Monaco. In 2009, the Los Angeles Times featured her in “Faces to Watch.” She has worked with Los Angeles Ballet, State Street Ballet, Eglesvsky Ballet and the Dance Theatre of Harlem. She has performed principal and soloist roles in numerous ballets including “The Nutcracker,” “Pas de Trois” (Minkus), “Dov’e la Luna,” “Alice in Wonderland,” “Swan Lake,” “La Sylphide” and “Coming Together.”

Sanders joined Ballet Memphis in 2016, coming from New York Theatre Ballet. With Ballet Memphis, he has danced in Steven McMahon’s “Vanguard” and “Carnival of the Animals,” as well as Uri Sands’ “Salve.” He trained at the Rock School for Dance Education, Ballet Academy East, and the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. He finished in the top 8 of the Youth America Grand Prix. He is from the Bronx, N.Y. 
Local performers in this year’s “Nutcracker” production are: Sophia Abernathy, Alena Eads, Brynn Allen, Alex Anguiano, Emery Armstrong, Mary Kathryn Armstrong, Michelle Azzi, David Beams, Scarlett Blackburn, Logan Blackburn, Luke Blackburn, Jenifer Blackburn, Abigail Bloomfield, Madison Bowser, Camila Bravo, Layla Brown, Jenna Broyle, Conleigh Burgess, Bella Burton, Kaitlin Campbell, Alison Casper, Robby Casper, Lindsey Chometa, Melissa Clower, Dyamon Cobb, Cammie Coleman,  Maclayne Copfer, Mackenzie Copfer, Faith Craig, Alyssa Crook, Abigail Crook, Karsyn Cunningham, Nichole Dai, Rebecca Dai, Elizabeth Danly, Qwynnen Davis, Madison Dean,  Anna Dickerson, Kamryn Dixon, David Domm, Natilee Domm, Tya Dudley, Caleigh Duquette, Lydia Earle, Leslie Earle, Emma Feldman, Dulce Fierros, Sarah Fisher, Haley Foster, Madison Fry, Kenna Gandy, Kara Gandy, Bethany Garcia, Rachael Gibbs, Savannah Gregory, Jules Gregory, Malynn Hable, Nadia Hartnauer, Jessica Hawk, Gabrielle Haywood, Talia Hedrick, Rylan Hernandez, Lyla Holdens, Mackenzie Holst, Skyla Horace, Dajia Horton, Oliver Howard, Caleb Hulen, Kyndra Hulen, Julie Huston, Bethany Huston, Emma Huston, Felicia Jarrett, Allison Jarvis, Autumn Jenkins, Marissa Jenkins, Kileigh Johnson, Tom Jones, Gwen Jones, Victoria Kinney, Liberty Koerbel, Zoe Lissner, Audrey Martin, Brazos Mazzaré, Brooks Mazzaré, Zoë Grace Mazzaré, Katie McClurg, Addison McHam, Jakayla McKinley, Kena McMichael, Lydia Middleton, Morgan Miller, Kate Moore, Laila Nguyen, Leely Nguyen, Anna Nowlin, Dacey Ogrodnik, Anastasia Oxler, Gabriel Oxler, Angelina Parshall, Ainsley Petty, Ashlynn Petty, Addison Petty, Anne Phillips,  Allie Phillips, Zoey Pippin, Caroline Priest, Annabel Priest, Ainsley Rhodes, Brooke Rhodes, Miya Richardson, YaTe’ jia Robinson, Paul Robinson, Demi Rodriguez, Grace Roeland, Jerod Rogers, Bailey Rose, Audrey Green, Chaysee Sepko, Sydney Sharp, Abby Shine, Gracie Smith, Levi Springer, Taylor Stroud, Layla Rose Sullivan, Anna Swartz, Michelle Swartz, Joslyn Swinney-Dewberry, Kaitlyn Taylor, Victoria Taylor, Brooklyn Thomas, Caralise Thornton, Addison Townsend, Gabriella Volberding, Ava Wamboldt, McKenna Ware, Julia Watkins, Miranda Watson, Elexis Wiebe, Brynn Wilder, Savannah Williams, Ariel Williams, Jessica Zavala, Polina Zhilchenkova.

Media underwriter for this year's production is KLTV Channel 7.

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