The magic will come alive as young dancers from the Midstate Ballet will be on pointe Saturday, Dec. 14 and Sunday, Dec. 15 at the Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center for the Greater York Dance presentation of "The Nutcracker."

The timeless classical ballet featuring the music of Tchaikovsky is one of the oldest annual holiday productions in the U.S. and has been a seasonal favorite at the Strand-Capitol in York since it was first presented by the Midstate Ballet in 1998.

A coveted role: This year, Ella Bernstein and Rachel Seymour have been selected for the role of Clara in the company's annual production. Bernstein, 11, will perform Saturday and Seymour, 11, will perform Sunday. The girls are each in their third year with the Midstate Ballet company.


The stage adaptation of E.T.A. Hoffman's classic story tells the magical tale of Clara's Nutcracker coming to life. As Clara's fantastic dream unfolds, she sails to the Kingdom of Sweets to dance and greet characters from around the world.

Special honor: In honor of the event, York City mayor Kim Bracey issued a proclamation declaring the week of Monday, Dec. 9, as "Nutcracker Week" in the city of York. The proclamation honors Greater York Dance for its 15th annual performance of the classic holiday ballet.

"The mayor's proclamation is truly an honor for us," Greater York Dance artistic director Lori Pergament said. "It recognizes the hard work of all of our dancers and volunteers, and illustrates the value that the city of York places on the performing arts."

On stage: This year's performance will showcase more than 100 dancers from the Midstate Ballet and Greater York Dance and will include professional dancers from the Pennsylvania Ballet.

Pennsylvania Ballet principal dancer Julie Diana will dance in the role of the Sugarplum Fairy. She is joined on stage by her husband, fellow principal dancer Zachary Hench, in the role of Cavalier.

--Reach Amy Peiffer at

See a holiday favorite

Midstate Ballet presents "The Nutcracker" at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 15, at the Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center, 50 N. George St., York.

Tickets are available from $18-$45.

For more information, call the Strand-Capitol box office at 717-846-1111 or visit