"The Nutcracker"

The Orangeburg Civic Ballet helps Christmas come alive each year with its performance of “The Nutcracker.”

"The Nutcracker" has thrilled generations with its timeless story of a young girl's journey to a magical land on Christmas Eve.

The ballet has enjoyed popularity since the mid-20th century and is now performed by countless ballet companies during the Christmas season.

The Orangeburg Civic Ballet presents “The Nutcracker” locally, helping a new generation learn the magic of Pyotr Tchaikovsky's masterpiece.

The OCB's performances of the ballet are usually on the second weekend of December and are usually held in South Carolina State University's Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium.

The OCB was started with 14 dancers when it was founded by Tamalyn Blackman

Originally known as the Orangeburg City Ballet, the company presented its first "Nutcracker" with the Junior Orangeburg Part-Time Players in 1992.

That inaugural production included speaking and singing parts along with dance and was performed by a 40-member cast.

In 1999, the OCB launched its first full-length ballet production of the show with a cast of more than 100 dancers.

The production's costumes and choreography have become more elaborate through the years.

The OCB’s 2018 production included a cast of 120, the largest ever assembled for the show.

Some members of the cast have been performing in the ballet for several years, with some performing all through elementary, middle and high schools.

The Orangeburg Civic Ballet will present its spring show, “The Wizard of Oz,” on Saturday, March 30, and Sunday, March 31.

For more information, visit www.orangeburgcivicballet.org

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Staff Writer

Gene Zaleski is a reporter/staff writer with The Times and Democrat.

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