Ballet theater group performs 'The Nutcracker' Dec. 16 in South Hall
Southern Ballet Theatre presents "The Nutcracker" on Dec. 16 at The Venue at Friendship Springs in Flowery Branch. Photo courtesy Laura Blatterman.

The Southern Ballet Theatre is twirling its way to The Venue at Friendship Springs in Flowery Branch for its take on Tchaikovsky's “The Nutcracker.”

On Dec. 16, young and old alike will be pulled into a wintry wonderland filled with sugar plum fairies and magical toys.

The Southern Ballet Theatre, a nonprofit based in Lawrenceville, will present three shows at 10:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.

“This may be our second year performing ‘The Nutcracker,’ but it’s a huge production,” said Alicia Chitwood, the ballet theater’s co-director. “We don’t like to keep things simple. We go all-out with the sets and lighting, and The Venue is able to accommodate that.”

‘The Nutcracker’

Who: Presented by Southern Ballet Theater, Lawrenceville

When: 10:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 16

Where: The Venue at Friendship Springs, 7340 Friendship Springs Blvd., Flowery Branch

How much: $18.50 adults, $16.50 students and seniors

More info: www.southernballettheatre.com

Viewers can expect to see an elaborate performance over two hours with two sets.

The Venue at Friendship Springs is new to the Southern Ballet Theatre. Until this point, Infinite Energy Arena was its primary venue, where the theater performed “The Nutcracker” earlier in November.

“As a nonprofit, we are extremely excited to have the opportunity to perform at The Venue at Friendship Springs,” she said. “We’re pretty well-known in the dance community, but other people in the community may not be familiar with us. We are trying to get our name out there, and dancing in new places is a good way to do that. We expect a large crowd to turn out as with other productions we have done, so we are having three shows.”

Dancers range from 10 to 18 years old.

“While we do bring in professionals for big roles like Cavalier and the Sugarplum Fairy, the rest are all pretty much middle school and high school students,” Chitwood said. “They’re extremely dedicated to dancing and all work so hard, and we want to give them all the chances that we can to let their talents shine.”

“My favorite thing about this production is that it’s a Christmas classic — almost everyone has heard of ‘The Nutcracker,’ and we hope a lot of people will come out with their families and friends to watch because of that. For many, going to watch different productions of the dance is already a tradition. We also just want to help spread a little holiday cheer.”

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