Behind the scenes at Roanoke Ballet Theatre’s production of Dracula

“There are no white tights. Nobody wears a tutu.”
Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 5:53 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - When you think of the ballet you probably don’t think of Dracula, but that’s the production the Roanoke Ballet Theatre will present Saturday.

This is not your typical ballet.

“There [are] no white tights. Nobody wears a tutu,” said choreographer and dancer Norbert Nirewicz.

WDBJ7 watched a rehearsal and got a behind-the-scenes preview as the dancers went through the steps of each routine for their adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

“The Roanoke Ballet Theatre is the strongest [and] the best it’s ever been, “said Nirewicz. “We have over 20 professional dancers and use a lot of kids from our schools, as well, to give them an opportunity to be on stage and maybe get inspired by professionals, as well.”

Nirewicz choregraphed the production and plays Dracula.

“It was a lot of pressure. I remember the 3:30 in the morning nights when I just can’t sleep and I’m thinking of the steps in my head, what music I’m going use, what period I’m going to use, what dancers I’m going to use, what costumes I’m going to use,” Nirewicz said.

“We have smoke. We have great lights. We have great music. We have passionate dancers,” said Nirewicz. “It should a little funny and somewhat scary and hopefully a lot of entertainment.”

The performances are October 30 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Jefferson Center in Roanoke. Tickets can be purchased at or

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