Updated: Aug 19, 2018
Anne Powell is not one of those people who looks at a huge stage and wonders how she'll fill it.
Powell and the rest of the Vail Youth Ballet Company wonder how they'll fit it all in.
Take this weekend's production of "Peter Pan, The Ballet" at the Vilar Performing Arts Center.
The students are all with Vail Valley Academy of Dance, and among other things, they had to learn to fly, because Peter Pan does that sort of thing.
Lauren Vossler plays a flying Peter Pan. Wendy (Annie Cerovich) and her kid brothers John (Harry Jaffe ) and Michael (Sydney Adair) also fly, as does Tinkerbell (Serena Kozesko).
The flying is choreographed soaring. They're upside down and all around, which is possible through the theatrical wizardry of the Vilar crew.
"The Vilar Center treats us like they would someone coming from New York City. They spend so much time and expertise with us. What a great gift they are," Powell said.
The Vail Valley Academy of Dance is a high school senior-dominated group — eight seniors, and that makes something like Peter Pan possible, Powell said. Several of the dancers spent much of their summer in intensive summer dance programs to improve their technical skills.
"It was fitting to find a vehicle that would showcase their efforts," Powell said. "'Peter Pan' has something for everyone — lost children, fairies, mermaids, Indians, pirates, a crocodile and a great story that lends itself to dance."
"Peter Pan, The Ballet" features good guys and bad guys, and they're clearly defined.
Colin Meiring, for example, plays Captain Hook and is one of the best bad guys ever.
Choosing the correct music was a labor of love, but make no mistake about it, it was labor. Powell, Morgan Flahive-Foro and others listened to several scores, eventually settling on the Carmone Delone score, adding to it when they needed to.
"I did not want music that was too dark for a children's dance production, and this score was light and fun," Powell said.
The costumes are stunning, handmade from Denver's International Ballet School. Mark and Sandra Carlson pitched in with costumes from their production of "Peter Pan," as well as their dingy for Hook and Smee.
"All of us from time to time need a respite from our busy day-to-day demands, and 'Peter Pan' offers a chance to sit back and be entertained. It gives us an opportunity to leave feeling simply happy," Powell said.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and firstname.lastname@example.org.