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June 20, 2011- Moscow Ballet and Pet Pal Animal Shelter

Moscow Ballet and Pet Pal Animal Shelter announce partnership to raise funds at December 26 & 27 performances of Great Russian Nutcracker
$5 off per ticket goes directly to Pet Pal Animal Shelter’s dogs, cats and many more needy animals

Moscow Ballet soloists
Moscow Ballet soloists
Lotus when found in St. Pete
Lotus when found in St. Pete
press release 20110620c
Rehabilitated Lotus at Pet Pal Animal Shelter

Contact: Sally Michael Keyes
413-499-1733 x21 JLIB_HTML_CLOAKING

(Berkshires, MA) June 20, 2011 – Moscow Ballet and Pet Pal Animal Shelter announce a partnership to raise funds for the non-profit animal shelter’s services. Five dollars from each ticket sold, for the Monday and Tuesday, December 26 and 27, 7:30pm performances of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker at the Mahaffey Theatre, will go directly to help abandoned, injured and abused animals at Pet Pal. Pet Pal Executive Director Scott Daly comments, “We are thrilled to work with Moscow Ballet on this fund-raiser! It’s a win-win to invite the community to see the acclaimed Great Russian Nutcracker and, at the same time, to raise potentially ten thousand dollars or more to save more homeless animals’ lives.” The Moscow Ballet performances feature award-winning principal dancers, a corps de ballet of 30 plus, 200 lavish costumes, larger-than-life Russian puppets and 9 hand-painted backdrops that are embellished with 3-D effects – a must see for the whole family! Moscow Ballet’s beloved Christmas story received critical acclaim in 2010; “Expansive…Knock-out…Thrill ” NY Times; ”Breathtaking” Charleston Today; and “Aristocratic finesse” Cleveland Plain Dealer. 2011 marks Moscow Ballet’s 19th annual Great Russian Nutcracker tour of 2 companies to 60+ cities across North America. To purchase tickets and simultaneously make a donation to Pet Pal Animal Shelter call Moscow Ballet 800-320-1733 x15.

Pet Pal Animal Shelter’s mission is to rescue dogs and cats from animal shelters that may otherwise be euthanized due to time limitations, illness, injuries or lack of socialization and training. They are also dedicated to educating the public about the pet overpopulation crisis, the importance of spaying/neutering and responsible pet ownership. Pet Pal Rescue was founded in the early 1980′s when 2 women brought animals scheduled to be euthanized directly into their homes, then found permanent homes for them. In August 2002 the organization moved to Pinellas County and in April 2004 a brand new state-of-the-art building officially opened its doors, a low cost Spay/Neuter Clinic came to be in 2008 and in 2009 Pet Pal Veterinary Clinic was added to the services.

The Great Russian Nutcracker - Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker tells the beloved Christmas story of the girl who falls in love with a Nutcracker Prince – with Russian flair. Praised by the NY Times as “thrilling and expansive,” the 40 impeccably trained Russian dancers leap, spin and lunge bringing the traditional story to life. The Act I Christmas party enchants with its magical toys, evil Mouse King and a journey through the glittering Snow Forest. Unique to the Great Russian Nutcracker, Russian folk characters Father Christmas and the Snow Maiden escort Masha (aka Clara) to the Land of Peace and Harmony in Act II where she and the Nutcracker Prince are honored by emissaries from heritages the world over; African, Russian, Asian, European and Hispanic. Set to Pytor Tchaikovsky’s famous score, Moscow Ballet’s production features lavish costumes, nine hand-painted backdrops with 3-D ornamentation and fanciful, larger-than-life puppets designed by Russian puppet master Valentin Federov. A must see show for everyone in the family this holiday season! www.nutcracker.com

History - Akiva Talmi Presents Inc. (ATP) is now known for its annual, touring Great Russian Nutcracker and full-length productions of the classic story-ballets; Swan Lake, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and others by the Moscow Ballet. ATP produced the “Cynthia Gregory National Tour” with Nancy Reagan as Honorary Chair; the “From the Top” NPR TV special featuring NYCB’s Violette Verdi and Itzhak Perlman, the “Alexander Godunov” national tour and more. Created by award-winning Juilliard alumnus, composer/conductor and theatrical producer, Akiva Talmi, ATP evolved out of the all-star Russian "Glasnost Festival Tour" (1986-92). The Great Russian Nutcracker made its debut in 1993 and was directed and choreographed by soloist Stanislav Vlasov of the famous Bolshoi Theater. In 1994, the Moscow State Theatre of Natalia Sats and the theatre's full orchestra joined Moscow Ballet to expand the company to an 88-artist tour which was billed as the "19th Century Classical Nutcracker." In 2003, Anatoly Emelianov, then an upstart choreographer and winner of the Diagelev award, restaged the Great Russian Nutcracker to critical acclaim. Moscow Ballet productions continue to feature award-winning principals and top graduates of Perm, Vaganova, Moscow State Academic Choreographic and Kiev schools.

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