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December 18, 2012 > Yoko's Dance Academy presents a holiday favorite

Yoko's Dance Academy presents a holiday favorite

By Nisha Patel

According to academy founder, Yoko Young, Yoko's Dance Academy has performed the Nutcracker annually since 2005 to share the art of dance with the community and to bring the magic of a holiday favorite to Fremont. This year's production includes over 100 dancers, ranging in age from age four to adults. The company strives to make each year's production unique and will include even more elaborate lighting, props, and scenery this year. Auditions for the production were held in August and rehearsals started in September; performers, choreographers, and production crews have spent countless hours to bring "The Nutcracker" to life on the Ohlone stage.

State Assembly member Bob Wieckowski will reprise his role as Drosselmeier; guest artist Justin VanWeest will be featured in a variety of roles. "I think my Nutcracker is the best," says Yoko. "I have seen many reproductions of the ballet in London, France, and New York where they try to change the original story. I stayed with the traditional story because people like the original, 18th century version best [sic]."

Yoko's Dance & Performing Arts Academy was founded in 1995 to teach the art of dance and support students to become independent, motivated, and mature young men and women. In addition to being one of the top competition studios in the country, Yoko provides her students with a myriad of opportunities to perform, representing Fremont in Japan, London at the time of the Summer Olympics, on TV shows and in many local civic activities.

Yoko earned the title "The Best Studio in The West" her very first year in business. Her superb choreography has earned numerous awards, including the "Diamond Award" for best choreography from American Dance Competition; the "Grishko Choreography Award" from 1996-1998; Kids Artistic Revue's "Choreographer of the Year" award every year since 2000 and "Teacher of the Year" from 2006-2009; 10 Starpower's Choreography Awards since 2001; and a Choreography Award from Showbiz in 2012. Yoko also trained 50 of her students to perform with professional Russian dancers in the Moscow Ballet's production of "The Nutcracker" in 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005.

Evening performances will be held December 21 and 22. Tickets may be purchased online at or through the Box Office at (510) 659-6031.

Yoko's Dance Academy
The Nutcracker
Friday: Dec 21
8 p.m.
Saturday, Dec 22
2 p.m. & 8 p.m.
Jackson Theatre
Smith Center, Ohlone College
43600 Mission Blvd., Fremont
(510) 659-6031

Tickets: $15 - $20
Event Parking: $2

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