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Afternoon at the ballet? Festival Ballet’s Le Corsaire, Oct. 8th, 9th

By September 27, 2011Orange County

Festival Ballet Theatre, FBT, is one of Southern California’s most accomplished regional ballet companies, and next weekend they are putting on their first performance of the 2011/2012 new season. I’m giving away 4 tickets to see Le Corsaire Suite and Mixed Repertoire on Sunday, October 9 at 2 p.m. at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. And there’s fun before the show with “Pirate & Princess Paper Dolls” pre-show activity in front of the Irvine Barclay Theatre. Children can decorate paper pirate and princess dolls and enjoy sweet treats.

To win tickets (a $110 value), simply comment at my OC Family blog. My kids will pick a random winner Oct. 5th.

It’s good to know the backstory of Le Corsaire before you go, so you can easily follow along—so a quick downlow here: Le Corsaire is a tale of Medora, a young Greek girl sold as a slave to Pasha though loved by the pirate Conrad. When Conrad attempts to rescue her, he is captured and sentenced to death. To save Conrad’s life, Medora agrees to marry Pasha, but during the ceremony, the slave girl Gulnare takes Medora’s place. That evening Conrad enters to take Medora away, while Gulnare reveals the ring that proves she is Pasha’s lawful wife. Medora and Conrad escape, but their ship, caught in a storm, is wrecked. Luckily, the two survive, washing up together on a rocky island.

If you go, you’ll unboutedly find the quality, talent and guest artists behind FBT is really remarkable. And parents should know the company is paired with Southland Ballet Academy (in Irvine and Fountain Valley), which teaches students 3 to late teens in all fields of dance. My girl attends and I love the fact that the students are involved in top-notch performances (including the upcoming Nutcracker at The Barclay). I also hold dear how the students are exposed to real-stage happenings, as well as seeing their friends perform in professional fashion. Artistic Director Salwa Rizkalla’s is the driving, elegant force behind both the Company and Academy.

For the upcoming Le Corsaire performance, audiences will appreciate guest star and former American Ballet Theatre principal dancer Jose Manuel Carreño. And the program also includes Balanchine’s Valse Fantaisie and two new works by choreographers Kerry Nicholls and Andrea Schermoly.

Performance info:
Shows Saturday, October 8 at 7:30 p.m., Sunday, October 9 at 2 p.m.. Adults: $35, Seniors: $30, Children: $20. For tickets, call 949.854.4646 or visit And as mentioned, prior to the Sunday performance, Festival Ballet Theatre hosts a “Pirate & Princess Paper Dolls” pre-show activity in front of the Irvine Barclay Theatre from 12:45 – 1:30 p.m; RSVP to reserve a spot at

So, again, to win the 4 free tickets (a $110 value), simply comment at OC Family by Oct. 5th and a random winner will be picked EOD on the 5th. Good luck, and enjoy the show!

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