Ah, casting… every year there will be tears of joy and tears of sorrow. This is part of the process, and GCB encourages good sportsmanship from dancers and parents alike.

Please understand that casting decisions will be made in order to produce the best show possible. Casting depends on many factors, including the number and skill level of all dancers who audition, our costume inventory, and the types of roles offered by any given Artistic Director.

There is no guarantee that everyone who auditions will receive a part — at the same time, certain dancers may be cast in more than one role. There is no automatic progression from one role to another (i.e. a Gingersnap does not always become a Mouse the following year). Furthermore, performers may be cast in the same role year after year (i.e. Snow Scene). The Artistic Director will make an effort to consider prior roles of each dancer, but it is not always possible to give every dancer a “new” role.

Casting Committee
The Casting Committee (which includes the Artistic Director, Assistant Director, all choreographers for the season, and an independent adjudicator hired specifically to attend auditions for the older age groups) is responsible for casting. Only members of the committee are allowed to view auditions — parents may not watch. It is the job of the independent adjudicator to identify and rank order all soloists (including Clara), then make recommendations to the Artistic Director. The Artistic Director has final authority over all casting decisions. The GCB Board of Directors is not involved with casting.
The role of understudy is critical to the success of our show. Understudies learn essential parts of the ballet, knowing they may never perform these roles. It is likely that many upper level dancers will be assigned an understudy role, and we appreciate those who generously agree to contribute their hard work, time, and talent.
Declining a Role
Parents, please read this article — your response to your dancer’s disappointment will have tremendous impact.
Helping Dancers Deal with Disappointment” by Nichelle Suzanne (Founder/Editor at Dance Advantage)

If a dancer needs to decline a role (including an understudy role) due to a scheduling conflict, please follow these instructions:

Notify the Artistic Director ( by email stating “Thank you for casting me/my dancer in the role of _______________. Unfortunately, I am/my dancer is not able to accept this part due to a scheduling conflict.”

If a dancer is unhappy with casting, and wishes to decline a role, please follow these instructions:

Notify the Artistic Director ( by email stating “Thank you for casting me/my dancer in the role of _______________. Unfortunately, I am/my dancer is not able to accept this part.”

If, furthermore, a dancer and/or parent would like to meet in person with the Artistic Director to discuss casting concerns, please add:

“I/we would like to discuss casting decisions, and I/we will contact you to schedule a meeting in January, after the production is over.”

The process of casting is complex and challenging. When roles are declined, the entire casting process must start all over again — this is a time consuming process to complete before rehearsals begin that coming weekend.

When distressing emails are sent (by dancers or parents) that criticize casting decisions, it is damaging to the Artistic Team — it also demonstrates unprofessional behavior. Dancers and parents are always welcome to have a conversation about casting, but the appropriate time for these meetings is after the production is over. Our goal is to prepare dancers for the real world of auditions, and teach them how to manage disappointment. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding.

Final Cast


Act One: Party Scene

Drosselmeyer:  Jeff Medley

Drosselmeyer’s Assistant / Nutcracker Prince:  Quinn Wyland

Clara:  Olivia Farnes

Fritz:  Robbie Gibbons

Mother:  Liz Dybdal

Father:  Dan Haney

Maid:  Alice Petasek

Butler:  Matthew Miller

Aunts:  Leslie Dybdal, Amy Glaspey, Virginia Rutherford

Uncles:  Brett Leischner, Clinton Summers, Russ Thomas

Girl Cousins:  Hazel Black, Lindley Erickson, Ashley Follett, Ameya Phillips, Sylvie Semanoff, Emma Williams

Boy Cousins:  Maia Haney, Cora Miller, Aubrie Phillips

Ballerina Doll:  Leena Wachtel

Harlequin Doll:  Clara Hahn

Toy Soldier Doll:  Alta Murray


Act One: The Magical Battle (Fight Scene)

Rat King:  Hayden Kiely

Hench Mice:  Hazel Black, Maggie Watts

Lead Mice:  Betty Wicks, Ruby Wicks

Little Mice:  Charlotte Angle, Norah Blakely, Nora Boyle, Isla Brake, Saoirse Sweeney Ferriter, Isis Franczyk, Dana Matteau, Anastasia Potchak, Kate Reed, Sarina Steintl

Soldier General:  Nina Erving

Soldier Corps:  Daphne Adams, Zachary Baldwin, Adeline Barnett, Piper Bratton, Aspen Headley, Genevieve Hedstrom, Ameya Phillips, Sylvie Semanoff

Ornaments:  Linnea Farr, Opal Murray, Zora Ybarra


Act One:  Snow Scene

Snow Queen:  Ava Tooke

Snow King:  Mark Nelson

Demi-Soloists:  Elizabeth Arrigali, Grace Nolan

Snowflakes:  Nina Erving, Cate Gibbons, Clara Hahn, Maisie Hart, Audrey Kurz, Thalia Lambros, Sylvie Nelson, Gabriella Wilson


Act Two: Kingdom of Sweets

Angels:  Daphne Adams, Genevieve Hedstrom, Emerson Laird, Maya Leischner, Rhea Smith, Ruby Wicks

Butterflies:  Maisie Hart, Thalia Lambros

Royal Servants:  Zachary Baldwin, Robbie Gibbons

Welcome Garden ~

Irises:  Piper Bratton, Sylvie Semanoff, Betty Wicks, Emma Williams

Peonies:  Adeline Barnett, Thea Goodwin, Maia Haney, Genevieve Hedstrom, Kiley Medlinger, Ruby Wicks

Chocolate from Spain ~

Soloist:  Audrey Kurz

Corps:  Ashley Follett, Nora Peragine

Coffee from Arabia ~

Soloists:  Elizabeth Arrigali, Mark Nelson

Corps:  Stella Albritton, Charlie Bratton, Audrey Elliott Muchow, Delilah Nelson, Libby Soll, Maggie Watts

Marzipan from Denmark ~

Shepherdesses:  Cate Gibbons, Maisie Hart, Gabriella Wilson

Sheep:  Ava Albritton, Riley Barnett, Eva Thurman

Tea from China ~

Soloist:  Nina Erving

Corps:  Adeline Barnett, Hazel Black, Carmen Cavanaugh, Charlotte Gimpelson, Thea Goodwin, Delilah Nelson, Nora Peragine, Kaitlyn Reinhardt

Trepak from Russia:  Elizabeth Arrigali, Grace Nolan, Ava Tooke


Act Two:  Waltz of the Flowers

Rose Queen:  Grace Nolan

Demi-Soloists:  Sylvie Nelson, Leena Wachtel

Corps:  Stella Albritton, Charlie Bratton, Audrey Elliott Muchow, Linnea Farr, Alta Murray, Opal Murray, Libby Soll, Zora Ybarra

Rosebuds:  Carmen Cavanaugh, Lindley Erickson, Kiley Medlinger, Kaitlyn Reinhardt