Press Release








Orchestra Bellevue


Music by Howard Blake    |    Choreography by Jennifer Porter

Music Director/Conductor:  Philip Tschopp

Performance Dates

November 26-27, 2016

Saturday 2:00 PM & 7:30 PM    

 Sunday 2:00 PM



The Theatre at Meydenbauer Center

11100 NE 6th Street, Bellevue 98004



available at the door and

Brown Paper Tickets www.brownpapertickets.com800.838.3006

Adult  $37-$40   Senior  $32-$35   Student  $22-$25   Child $12-$15   VIP Seating $45-$50  425.455.1345



Imagine awakening to a world of new fallen snow. You build a snowman, you give him eyes, a nose and a mouth.  You tell him secrets and pretend he can understand.  Eventually you must go inside and say goodbye, but not before going on a whimsical journey with your snowman!

This beautiful story is about the power of friendship, a lonely little boy, the snowman he creates and the wild adventure they share. From the boy’s mundane world, so exotic through the Snowman’seyes, they travel to the Snowman’s wintery world, so magical to James.  Whether the creatures on their trail be naughty or nice, James has nothing to fear with the Snowman by his side.

The whole family will not want to miss this magical splendor that CITY OPERA BALLET has in store to open the 2016 holidays on Thanksgiving WeekendThe only ballet of The Snowman performed with live orchestra in the United States, Jennifer Porter’s reprise of her original choreography (2007) is brought to you by Bellevue’s own opera ballet company under the baton of Music Director/Conductor, Philip Tschopp.  Set to the hauntingly beautiful score and lyrics by Howard Blake and inspired by the beloved “book without words” (1978) and animated short film by Raymond Briggs, this is a story for everyone who has ever had (or wished to have) an imaginary friend.

Production is by arrangement with G. Schirmer, Inc., publisher and copyright owner.



Nine years after our world premiere ofThe Snowman, it is a bittersweet experience for choreographer, Jennifer Porter, to bring back this ballet, so dear to her heart, to open the 2016 holiday season.  The little boy, James, was originally played by her son, Leo, then just 8 years old. While studying the video footage to prepare the 2016 production, she has been overwhelmed with nostalgia. That tiny darling little boy, who frolicked about on stage without a moment of fear or self consciousness, is now sixteen.  Leo goes to Seattle Prep, and surprisingly, isn’t involved in theater at all.  He is an amazing artist, who designs album covers for rappers all over the country and has recently been designing specialty clothing (for fun and PROFIT!).  Mom still hopes to get him on stage for The Snowman 2016, maybe as a tree.  Returning to enjoy this walk down memory lane is the original Jackie Frost, the mischievous trouble maker, danced by Christina Stockdale, who returns to us from Las Vegs where she currently lives and dances.  Kyle Johnson in his lead role as the Snowman also returns from Porter’s original 2007 and 2008 productions. In the intervening years, Johnson has danced for many great choreographers and become a beautiful and accomplished artist.  He is the reason Leo was so comfortable on the stage years ago, and Johnson will no doubt have the same effect on our new “James” (Caleb Rumsey).  Caleb, age 11, currently studies ballet, hip hop, jazz and tap at Image Studio of Dance in Fircrest, where one of his teachers is BALLET BELLEVUE soloist, Lorraine Constantine.  Rounding out the cast are the beautiful dancers of BALLET BELLEVUE and students of Ballet Bellevue School, portraying Santa and his reindeer, cats, dolls, penguins, a fox, a princess and a whole atlas full of dancing snowpeople from different countries with energy and finesse and a lot of sparkling footwork. Also returning from  the original production are student dancers Vanessa Hsu, Ana Jojic and Caitlin Compton, now promoted to “big kid” roles!

Orchestra Bellevue boasts players selected from the finest of the region’s instrumentalists (members of the PacificNorthwest Ballet Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, and Auburn Symphony), as well as our community’s top student musicians, conducted by COB Music Director, Philip Tschopp. 

Bellevue City Opera

Rahul Buthra, young boy soprano performing “Walking in the Air,”  is a student of Indian classical music with Vasu Sundarraj, creative director of Swaranjali music school, as well as a member ofthe Bellevue Youth Choir under the direction of Darcy Morissey.

CITY OPERA BALLET is a non-profitorganization based in downtown Bellevue, dedicated to bringing the finest professional arts to the region through performances of opera and ballet with live orchestra.  Featuring Ballet Bellevue, Bellevue City Opera and Orchestra Bellevue, this rare treasure in our city combines a passion for excellence with the dedication to produce outstanding regional talent.   CITY OPERA BALLET is the Eastside’s only company committed to fully live musical presentations ofopera and ballet in classical works, contemporary masterpieces and new works by Northwest artists.  Recent projects include Giselle (2014), Stravinsky’s Firebird (2014), Nutcracker (2014),  Opera + Ballet (2015 & 2016), The Marriage of Figaro (2015),  Handels Messiah:  Ballet/Oratorio (2015), Cosi fan tutte (August 2016) andRomeo & Juliet (October 2016).  Following Jennifer Porter’s The Snowman (Thanksgiving weekend 2016), future productions include Firebird (March 2017),  La Traviata (August 2017) and La Boheme (August 2018).