Monday, December 23, 2019

Hyde Park School of Dance's AMIRA: A CHICAGO CINDERELLA STORY Returns March 27–29

Hyde Park School of Dance (HPSD) celebrates its home 
base—Hyde Park—and its hometown—Chicago—with 
the return of its original work Amira: A 
Chicago Cinderella Story. Performances are March 27–
29 at Mandel Hall on the University of Chicago 
campus, 1131 E. 57th Street, Chicago.
This Chicago-centric retelling of the Cinderella story 
is staged by HPSD Founding Artistic Director August 
Tye, ballet mistress and choreographer at the Lyric 
Opera of Chicago, Amira is the story of a young 
girl forced to leave her native country without 
her mother, arriving in Chicago and struggling to 
make a home in Hyde Park. The narrative follows 
the events of the traditional Cinderella story, leading 
to a Masked Ball in Hyde Park and a young man who 
becomes smitten with Amira. When she runs away 
at midnight, he and his friends search various Chicago 
neighborhoods trying to find her—Little India, 
downtown, Pilsen, Chinatown, Bronzeville, and Hyde 
Park—until they meet at a place that is special to both 
of them.
“Amira: A Chicago Cinderella Story celebrates 
Chicago’s South Side and its diverse 
neighborhoods, as well as the perseverance of 
immigrants to make a home in a new place,” 
commented Tye. “We also hope to provide positive 
images of young girls as strong, smart, and capable.”
The cast includes approximately 130 dancers age 
seven to adult. To create Amira, which premiered in 
2018, Tye directed the production and collaborated with 
seven HPSD faculty members to create the 
choreography. Tye also worked closely with Costume 
Designer Jacquelyn Sanders on this modern 
Cinderella story and professional photographer Damien 
Thompson to create projection scenery featuring 
the neighborhoods of Chicago. Amira: A Chicago 
Cinderella Story is set to Prokofiev’s lush, 
jubilant score.

Amira: A Chicago Cinderella Story takes place 
Friday, March 27 at 7 p.m.;
Saturday, March 28 at 1 and 6 p.m.; and 
Sunday, March 29 at 2 p.m.
at Mandel Hall, 1131 E. 57th Street, in 
Tickets, which go on sale in February, are 
$25 for adults, $20 for seniors (65+), 
$10 for children ages 5–18 and for 
students with school ID,
and free for children younger than 5.
Tickets and more information are 
available at 773-493-8498 
Hyde Park School of Dance
Founded in 1993 as the Hyde Park School of Ballet, 
Hyde Park School of Dance is a 501(c)3 
non-profit providing opportunities for students of 
all ages and abilities to study, perform, and 
create classical and contemporary dance at 
the highest levels of discipline and artistry 
within a community dedicated to the welcoming 
inclusion of dancers of all races, religions, body 
types, genders, sexual orientations, and family 
income backgrounds. Led by Founding Artistic 
Director August Tye, Hyde Park School of 
Dance is committed to offering children the 
chance to experience the empowering rewards 
of self-discipline, hard work, and 
collaboration in a diverse and supportive 
environment, cultivating a love of dance and a 
strength of body, mind, and character that 
will benefit students throughout their lives.

Photos by Marc Monaghan.
Top: Kwame Atiogbe and Ladonna Freidheim.
Bottom: Julia Rademacher-Wedd.

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