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Lexington's African American Ballet Troupe to debut Ebony Nutcracker

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Posted at 9:35 AM, Dec 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-06 09:52:12-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — A holiday staple set to an iconic soundtrack. We're all familiar with Tchaikovsky's famous Nutcracker.

"Ever since I was 9 years old, I've always wanted to do something like this," says Kayla Chambers-Reed of African American Ballet Troupe.

But plies and turns aside, this is not your average nutcracker. This is the African American Ballet Troupe's spin on the Christmas classic, their first-ever Ebony Nutcracker in Lexington.

"We have some R&B in there, hip hop, even some African music."

Chambers-Reed founded Lexington's ballet troupe—made up of teenagers—earlier this year.

The group has spent months working with young ballerinas across the city and choreographing their own routines.

The December 20 performance will mark the troupe's biggest show yet, with close to 60 dancers spinning into the spotlight.

"It brings me a lot of joy because this is the first time this community is going to have something like this. It gives these students a chance to be part of a classical ballet they probably thought they never could be a part of," says dance teacher Desean Elliott.

A classical ballet with a modern twist these ballerinas can't wait to share.

"Growing up I wanted to see more diversity and different dances and that's what we're doing now," says Chambers-Reed.

The Ebony Nutcracker is a one-time performance at the Lyric Theatre at 7 p.m. Tuesday, December 20. Reserve your tickets by calling the Lyric.

The AABT will also be collecting cold weather accessories like hats and gloves for the Hope Center that night.