At seven years old, Ridge Park Elementary School student Carina Eades is already having an opportunity to realize one of her dreams.
“I used to watch The Nutcracker all the time when I was little, and then I got obsessed with it, and that’s when I started to dance,” said Carina.
This week the first grader will be performing with the Donetsk Ballet of Ukraine at Plymouth Whitemarsh High School as part of the International Ballet Exchange. During the performance, Carina will portray various roles, including an angel, a little doll and a Polichinelle.
“Polichinelle is my favorite, because I get to hide under Mother Ginger’s skirt and when she pulls it up, I get to jump out,” said Carina.
To prepare for The Nutcracker, Carina has been practicing for four hours on Sunday evenings since September. In addition to studying ballet, Carina also takes Hip Hop classes at the Institute of Dance Artistry (IDA).
The International Ballet Exchange brings world renowned ballet stars to local schools in the Philadelphia area, giving upcoming ballet students the chance to train and perform with professional dancers — and giving school students and the local community the opportunity to see classical ballet.