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As is yearly tradition, the ballerinas of the Elizabeth P. de Zeller Ballet Academy from La Romana took the stage the second weekend in December for a holiday Christmas recital. Families of the dancers and residents, as well as curious visitors in town, filed into the large amphitheater this past Saturday to see “The House of Dolls.” The dark night sky was a perfect backdrop to enjoy the vivid colors and lights emerging from Martina’s pink and blue girly bedroom, the setting for a magical fairytale where dolls come to life. Cute dolls of all sizes, ranging from ones with pink hair, to stripped stockings and top hats were arranged on center stage, and not long after two ballerinas dressed as chambermaids dusted off the dolls did they sit down quite expectantly awaiting something enchanting to happen. Prima ballerina, Daniela Hernández, dressed as a fairy in a purple and green tutu with wings one by one waved her wand over the dolls and drew them to center stage for varying dance numbers. We loved seeing the ballet’s creativity transpire; the performance directed by Ivonne Zeller brought to life two Jack in the Box, jokers, ladies with parasols, Flamenco dancers, a genie, an angel, a wind up doll and more. The wind up doll who was very stiff in the beginning and often wound down, much to the dismay of children in the audience – one who even shouted “Oh no!” – eventually loosened her rigid limbs and danced quite a duet with the fairy. It was then cuteness overload when toddlers of the dance academy shuffled out on stage, dressed as mini elves, and followed their instructor’s steps. This annual event has the very special significance of donating all the proceeds from ticket sales to the “Hogar de Ancianos Padre Abreu” (Elderly person’s home) in La Romana. For the past 48 years since the academy has been running has it given this contribution to the home, and it’s one they truly cherish and count on each year. So as you plan your Christmas calendar and attendance in Casa de Campo’s holiday events, remember how you can make a difference at this time of the year and bring cheer to those in need. Congratulations to all the ballerinas for a lovely recital! View more pictures in the gallery below, taken by Mariana Heredia on Saturday, December 9th: