Lake Charles Civic Ballet

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Getting Ready for the Show – An Art Show!

Guest Writer: Kelley Saucier, LCCB Board Member

I sat in Rosa Hart yesterday watching the first full rehearsal of LCCB’s Christmas in Louisiana: Once Upon a Time (CiLA) with my good friends and fellow board members Stephanie Weaver, Erin Lang and Carla LeBoeuf. This was my first time watching this year’s production and Stephanie, Erin and Carla’s first time to ever see it at all. Created in 2004, CiLAand only performed that one year, we are all very excited to see something new

LCCB 'CiLA' sets

Crew members make adjustments to the Ryan Street Trolley.

As we sat and talked during the rehearsal, we marveled at the drops and settings created by local artist and resident LCCB designer, Fred Stark. Fred created the original settings for the 2004 production, but he didn’t quite finish or perfect some of his works that year. He is excited to be bringing back these creations for this year’s performance and to make them even better.

So what will you see? Well, a fabulous backdrop depicting Ryan Street in the 1890’s for starters. The scene sets the stage for the trolley car that used to roll down Ryan Street. LCCB dancers actually jump onto a trolley Fred built for LCCB – both the backdrop and trolley is part of the permanent collection of the ballet company.

Fred has also created a beautiful blueprint backdrop depicting the classic architecture of our Charpentier District. Carla has been busy restoring garden district homes, so she was able to share with us some of the details she noticed in Fred’s blueprint. For example, the columns are actually known as Lake Charles Columns!

LCCB 'CiLA' sets

Fred Stark gives instruction to crew member Matthew Locklin and soloist Adrian Durham in the soon to be filled Rosa Hart Theatre.

Jean Lafitte and his pirate crew is my favorite number in the show – I know, I know, it should be the part with my own daughter playing Catherine Sallier, but I love the pirate dance. We did not get to see the entire ship on stage yesterday, but their sail was flying. I can’t wait to see them with their full set.

Fred’s artistry is a gift to our community. When you come see Christmas in Louisiana: Once Upon a Time, not only do you get an action packed hour of Christmas spirit and Lake Charles history, you have the opportunity to see the work of a great local artist. His creations are part of our local culture and a legacy that will endure with Lake Charles Civic Ballet.

Cameron Durham Photographer