In the Nutcracker were: (front row, left to right) Mariah Loyson, Ava Panka, Adalynn Starz and Emmalise Starz. Back Row: Ella VanDrunen and Michaela Bosveld.

Area kids performed in ‘The Nutcracker’

Six area students were involved in four performances over three days in “The Nutcracker” this past weekend at the Schwan's Convention Center for the Performing Arts at Marshall High School.

All six of the students currently reside in Ghent.

Ava Panka, who attends Minneota Public Schools, played one of the rats who battled the Nutcracker in the second scene of Act I, while also performing as one of the angels in Act II.

Mariah Loyson, who attends St. Edward's School in Minneota, was one of the mice that teamed up with the rats to battle the Nutcracker.

Michaela Bosveld of Ghent, a student at Marshall, played The Nutcracker and also was one of the Chinese girls.

Mark Bosveld, Michaela's father, was the Acting Director of The Nutcracker.

He has directed over 30 high school plays and musicals, as well as performing in over 20 community and university productions.

Also, Emmalise Starz played both a rat and an angel, Adalynn Starz was a snow bunny in the production, and Ella VanDrunen was a snowflake and a flower.

Bosveld, VanDrunen and the Starz siblings all attend school in Marshall. All four performances, choreographed by Annie Deutz and Breanna Thompson, earned standing ovations.

Professional dancers Matthew Keefe and his wife Brittany Fridenstine-Keefe of the Twin Cities performed a Grand Pas de Deux in the performance.

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