Dancers captivate with Disney story

Josh Dean

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Beignets, a charming prince and dark magic within the streets and bayous surrounding New Orleans.

This is where the beginning of the tale took place.

Disney’s “Princess and the Frog” brought its fantastical journey to the Civic Center where the audience first beheld a poor waitress.

She had the aspiration of owning her own restaurant, but had nothing but the love of her mother, and the dreams of her father.

At a ball, Tiana is serving beignets when she trips and falls, leaving the sugary pastries all over the floor. She is given a new dress by her friend who later planned to marry the Prince of Moldova.

Little did she know he was an imposter. Earlier in the evening, the prince was tricked by a sorcerer, masquerading as a card reader, into becoming a frog. His assistant was turned into the prince.

Tiana is mistaken later in the evening for a princess, as she shows off a shiny new dress, by the actual prince who is now a frog.

The prince, needing to kiss a princess to turn back into his normal self, asks for one which she gives.

But in a mad turn of events, Tiana is transformed into the very skin of the creature he so desperately wanted to shed. They retreat to a bayou where they meet a blind voodoo woman named Mama Odie.

She tells them that in order to turn back into their former selves, the prince needs to kiss the real princess by midnight. After meeting a wild crew of friends in the swamps surrounding the city and amid the celebrations of Mardi Gras, the prince found the kiss he needed to return to his former life.

In the process he also found true love in the hand of Tiana.

As the curtain fell on scenes of Tiana serving in her newly acquired restaurant the audience was in for another treat.

After a brief intermission the dancers retook the stage and performed styles consisting of jazz, modern, cotemporary, ballet and tap.

The performances were moving and emotionally charged. The graceful and swift moves of the dancers were executed without flaw despite repeated technical difficulties with the music. The performances were called Rise Up, Rorschach and Women, which featured a variety of sections.

The audience was kept in constant connection with the dancers as they performed kicks, turns and partner work in a multitude of cadences.

John Bernard, a famous tap dancer from New York City, also joined the bevy of performers and wowed the crowd with his zebra striped tap shoes.

The Civic Center was graced Friday night with a show that was full of talented performances and captivating emotions.