On Saturday, more than 20 Newberry-area dancers with the Newberry Ballet Guild will take the stage at the Newberry Opera House for the premier weekend of “Dark Carousel,” an original ballet based on a story written by local author Brad Joiner.
Set during the turn-of-the-19th-century heyday of the traveling circus, “Dark Carousel” follows the story of a pair of sisters, the younger of which is longing to visit the carnival that’s come to their small town.
The adventure begins when the older sister agrees to take her younger sibling. “They run into all sorts of characters, each of which performs some type of dance,” says Kendyl Griffith, who founded the Guild in 1976 and serves as the group’s artistic director.
“There are the three gypsies who work as a fire dancer, a beast tamer and an acrobat; various circus performers from that era, including a strong boy, a huntress and a tattooed beauty and a chapeaugrapher a trick dancer, who uses a single piece of fabric to transform herself into several different dancing characters.”
The story takes a dark turn when the younger sister gets lost in the crowd and ends up at the carousel, where scary things are happening and the ringmaster isn’t entirely what he seems to be.
“It gets a little creepy, but it works out in the end,” says Griffith. “It’s a great story, just scary enough.”
Performances of “Dark Carousel” are scheduled for 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets are $12.50; purchase online at www.newberryoperahouse.com
Katie McElveen, Special to The State