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California Contemporary Ballet Announces Fundraising Campaign for Summer Performance of “Thumbelina”

Local Ballet Company Soon to Premiere Latest Production; Requests Support from Patrons of the Arts

La Canada, CA, June 07, 2013 --( Aerin Holt of California Contemporary Ballet (, the originator of the celebrated ballet “The Snow Queen,” has initiated a campaign on the web site to raise funds for the upcoming June 29 premiere of their newest major original ballet production of “Thumbelina.”

The creation of a ballet based upon Hans Christian Andersen’s fable of Thumbelina has occupied Ms. Holt's thoughts for years, and she has finally moved forward on the production. “It's a story that I've thought about for a long time, and we are very excited about the production. I have teamed up with Dwight Bernard Mikkelsen who has written wonderful original music, and Lynn Bryson Pittenger who is collaborating with me on the choreography.”

Ms. Holt, who first adapted Hans Christian Andersen’s tale of “The Snow Queen” into a highly successful seasonal ballet fifteen years ago, felt it was time to create a new ballet for her company—and it was only fitting that the inspiration sprang from the same classic source. When she mentioned the ballet to her friend Mikkelsen, a prolific classical composer, she was surprised and delighted with his immediate enthusiasm for the idea. He began work at once on compositions, and Ms. Holt admitted herself is “delighted with his musical interpretations.”

The surprises continued when she received an offer from a family member to make the large flowers using scrap metal from his property in New Mexico. A series of conversations ensued about the design of the set pieces, ultimately leading to the creation of ten-foot tall flowers, five-foot toadstools, and the famous tulip from which Thumbelina is born. The newly-designed tulip will operate by means of a hydraulic system, enabling its petals to open at the appropriate moment. To crown the bright reality of Ms. Holt's dreamed-of set, these expensive pieces were offered as a donation, giving Ms. Holt the impetus needed to go forward with her production immediately.

In an effort to secure additional much-needed financial support for the ballet, the Company is working on a broad fundraising campaign. “Expenses for a production like this are considerably greater than many people recognize,” says Ms. Holt. “Theater costs, sets, costumes, promotion—it all adds up to much more than you might expect.” To help in funding all these costs, the Company has established a donation page where anyone may make a donation:

Jaclyn Stryker, the star in the upcoming premiere of the Thumbelina ballet received her core dance training from Ms. Holt's dance academy and says, “It's been Aerin's dream to create this ballet for as far back as I can remember. She made it sound fantastic, and I wanted to be a part of it. I'm very happy that the time for it has finally come!”

“Thumbelina” by California Contemporary Ballet Los Angeles premieres at Glendale Community College (1500 N. Verdugo Road, Glendale, CA) on June 29th at 7:30 PM, and on June 30th at 2:00 PM. To donate in support of the production, visit

Tickets are $20–$30 at Group tickets are also available.
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California DanceArts
Erin Holt

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