of Lake Villa, who dances the lead role of the Nutcracker Prince, is performing in his
10th show -- and he's
Sixteen-year-old Allison Hudson of Libertyville
, this year's Clara, celebrates her
ninth season with the show.
...Kopecky began studying at Dancenter North when he was 5 years old, switching from another studio where he had taken lessons from the time he was 3.
"The studio where I was going in Lake Zurich was more competition.I wanted something that was a little bit more performance," he
At Dancenter North
has developed into a confident performer.His
favorite aspect of the "Nutcracker" experience, though, is the final days of preparation before the show opens.
"What I enjoy most is seeing everybody working through things they have to do and getting their costumes ready," he
said. This is Kopecky's sixth and final time dancing the Nutcracker Prince role because he graduates from Carmel High School this year.He
hasn't chosen a college yet, but has decided that he
will major in dance and marketing.Also a jazz and tap dancer since 3, he has been a member of the professional company Especially Tap Chicago for four years. Kopecky
said the part of the Nutcracker Prince has been "basically the same" from year to year, "but as I grew up it changed in difficulty."
It's a role he
relishes because, he
said, "You're not the main focus of the entire show, but you're still a responsible lead.