By Amanda Foust
A local ballet company wants people to welcome the onset of spring with a tale of young love.
Alyona Yakovleva-Randall, the founding artistic director of the Indiana Ballet Conservatory in Carmel, said that the group’s upcoming performance of “La Fille mal Gardée” at the Indianapolis Museum of Art will be a charming and lively tale.
“The ballet is filled with colorful costumes and sets, beautiful dancing and a storyline that takes you on a countryside journey filled with so much whimsy, humor, and joy,” she said of the play whose title translates to “The Wayward Daughter.”
The story is about a girl named Lise who falls in love with a young farmer, Colas. Marriage is not an option because Lise’s mother has arranged a marriage for Lise to a dim-witted rich man named Nicez.
“The story of the ballet is the process of Lise and Colas falling in love and how they work through the process. It is very comical, light, and funny,” said Courtney Nesser, a senior at Indiana Cyber Charter School who plays the character of Lise.
And Nesser said she has experienced a lot of growth through the variety of emotions her character experiences.
“Even though this ballet was made many years ago and is an old story, the principles you can take away from the story line you can still apply to life today,” she said. “It is very interesting to see the difference between marrying for money versus marrying for love and how Lise decides between the two.”
Yakovleva-Randall has enjoyed her role in the ballet as well and said she takes the individual growth of her students seriously.
“The reason we take on these huge challenges is to equip our pre-professional dancers with the experience of producing full-length ballets,” she said.
Nesser had been taught by Yakovleva-Randall for almost 10 years of her dancing career and has plans to further her growth at Butler University in the fall. Her plans include pursuing a bachelor’s degree in dance performance and taking classes within the exercise science curriculum.
“Her heart is as big as her beautiful smile, and I know she will do great things,” Yakovleva-Randall said of Nesser. “Come join us by being swept away to another time and place where we can watch young love unfold with an undercurrent of giggles and celebration of the glorious spring we’ve been awaiting.”
“La Fille mal Gardée” ● Toby Theatre in the Indianapolis Museum of Art ● 4000 Michigan Rd. in Indianapolis ● 2 and 7 p.m. May 17 ● Tickets start at $15 ● For more information visit www.IndianaBalletConservatory.org