Taking the stage

Print Article

Elise Sabin plays Clara in the Noble Dance Performing Company’s production of “Journey to the Land of the Sweets.” (Photo courtesy of Wayne Murphy of JMK Photography)

When Elise Sabin steps into the role of Clara in the “Journey to the Land of Sweets,” she admits it’s a challenge.

Sabin has practiced alongside her fellow dancers with the Noble Dance Performing Company for up to two hours, six days per week to prepare. She also has years of ballet training and summer intensives on her resume.

But the part of Clara, in the abridged version of the holiday classic the “Nutcracker,” is different than most performances she’s been a part of. When she comes onto the stage at the Whitefish Performing Arts Center this weekend, Sabin will be playing a character rather than dancing on stage as herself.

“It’s outside my comfort zone,” she said last week. “There is a lot of acting and making sure you are taking on the persona of that person. Each movement has to be that person.”

In “Journey to the Land of Sweets,” Sabin plays Clara who dreams her toy soldiers to life and finds herself in the middle of a battle between her toys and the house rats. When the battle subsides, Clara is transported to the sugary Land of the Sweets.

Sabin, who is a junior at Whitefish High School, began ballet young, but says when she was in fourth grade she began to get more serious about dancing. Though she’s tried jazz, hip-hop, modern and contemporary dancing, it is ballet that has remained her focus.

“I wanted to be a ballerina — the pointe shoes, the tiara,” she said. “It developed from there.”

“It’s my escape place,” she says of ballet. “I prioritize it way more than I should, but I’m always working to get better. All the girls [in the company] are so supportive.”

For the past three summers, Sabin has participated in summer intensives to train in ballet. In 2016 she traveled to Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, and last year she went to the Oregon Ballet Theatre in Portland. Sabin trained last summer at University of North Carolina School of the Arts, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Sabin says training at the summer sessions gave her an understanding of what it’s like to train as a professional dancer. Practicing six days per week for six hours, she said, was exciting, but also exhausting.

“It gives you the opportunity to really focus only on that,” she said. “You get a lot better, a lot faster.”

While she praises the training she has received under Natalie Molter, she says the summer intensives provide an opportunity for instruction from a different perspective.

“With ballet you’re always growing,” she said. “You’re always trying to get better with your technique and presentation. It can be overwhelming, but you pick away at it and it’s a good feeling when you achieve it.”

Though she has come to spend hours practicing ballet and has a much more grown up understanding of it than when she was little just starting out, somethings still remain the same.

“The costume fittings are so much fun,” she said.

The Noble Dance Performing Company presents “Journey to the Land of the Sweets” Dec. 7-9 at the Whitefish Performing Arts Center under the direction of Natalie Molter.

Showtimes are 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec 7, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec 8, and 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec 9. Tickets are $18 adults, $8 students. All tickets are reserved seating and are available at nobledance.org.

Print Article

Read More Local News

U.S. Senate passes lands package

February 20, 2019 at 10:38 am | Whitefish Pilot The U.S. Senate by a wide margin passed a public lands bill last week that permanently authorizes the Land, Water and Conservation Fund, a key piece of legislation that has been used across Montana o...

Comments

Read More

Economist says innovation needed to address affordable housing issue

February 20, 2019 at 10:38 am | Whitefish Pilot With a focus on the challenges of affordable housing, Montana’s Economic Outlook Summit statewide tour stopped at the Hilton Inn in Kalispell recently. The Bureau of Business and Economic Research ...

Comments

Read More

Climate advocate training workshop Saturday

February 20, 2019 at 10:36 am | Whitefish Pilot The Flathead Valley Chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby will hold a Climate Advocate Training workshop for local folks interested in climate solutions at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 23. CCL is a nonprof...

Comments

Read More

State studying reconstruction of Whitefish Stage Road

February 20, 2019 at 10:35 am | Whitefish Pilot The Montana Department of Transportation is hosting an open house public meeting on a study to review roadway reconstruction alternatives for Whitefish Stage Road between West Reserve Drive and Monta...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 862-3505
312 E. Second Street
Whitefish, MT 59937

©2019 Whitefish Pilot Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X