Arts & Culture

Going Behind the Scenes At Dayton Ballet's Nutcracker

Dec 6, 2015
 The Dayton Ballet prepares for its 2015 production of The Nutcracker.
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker is a magical ballet. With dozens of parts for children (mice, gingerbread men, sugarplum-fairy-attendants!), it’s an endearing work. But if you’re the choreographer—the person trying to organize all those dancers—it’s no easy task. Culture Couch producer Jason Reynolds takes us behind the scenes at the Dayton Ballet.

courtesy of Human Race Theatre Company

The stage at the Loft Theatre will be transformed into Macy's Santaland for the Human Race Theatre Company's production of The Santaland Diaries, the one-man shows based on David Sedaris' famous public radio essay.  Tim Lile, who will portray Crumpet, joined WYSO's Niki Dakota in the studio to talk about the upcoming show.

The Santaland Diaries is onstage at the Loft Theatre December 10 - 19th.  More information is at

Scott Lee, Rich Reuter, Brad Denson and Sharon Lane are among the local musicians who will perform to benefit the creative writing program at Stivers School for the Arts in Dayton.  The event will take place at Square Roots Recording Studio in Troy, and the group gave Niki Dakota a musical preview of the festivities.

Forever Young, a celebration of the music of Bob Dylan to benefit Stivers School for the Arts Creative Writing Program, is Saturday, December 5th.

After moving into their new location on Grand Ave. in Dayton, the Grass Roots Enrichment Center has been its programming including creating STRONG, a new program to prevent and treat physical, emotional and sexual abuse in children and teens.  Lisa Patrick from Grass Roots visited the WYSO studios to talk with Kaleidoscope host Juliet Fromholt about STRONG and the upcoming Surrealist Ball fundraiser for the program.

Lori Gravley reads Kathy Austin's poem, "Open Door."

Adam Pascal made the journey from rock bands to musical theater by debuting the role of Roger in RENT.  While in town to work with students at Wright State University, Adam visited the WYSO studios along with WSU musical theater professor Joe Deer to chat with Niki Dakota live on Excursions.

Adam Pascal will perform at Wright State University on December 2nd at 8pm

Janeal Ravndal reads Maureen Fry's "Nature Poem."

Jimmy Rogers is one of 30 local musicians participating in Such A Night: The Last Waltz live, a musical recreation of the Band's The Last Waltz to benefit WYSO.  Rogers made a return visit to the WYSO studios for a live set on the air and spoke with Tod Weidner about the collaborative show as well as what he's been up to musically.

Such A Night: The Last Waltz Live to benefit WYSO is November 25th and 27th at the Dayton Art Institute.

The Rubi Girls

This Saturday, November 28 at 8pm, Dayton’s very own Rubi Girls will perform an annual benefit show to raise money that will go to fight HIV/AIDS.

The 'Girls' will take the stage at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds Coliseum to present The Show Must Go On, an annual event now for about 17 years. 

To find out more about the show and about the Rubi Girls themselves, we caught up with founding members, Josh Stucky and Brent Johnson, and Rubi member Jonathan McNeil.

Cathy Essinger reads her poem, "For My Cat Boo."