The mission of the Orpheum Dance Program is to infuse the next generation with a love of dance through participation on the highest level.
Combining community dance classes with two major performances a year, The Nutcracker and A Midsummer Night’s Dream The Catskill Mountain Foundation, in partnership with Victoria Rinaldi, helps cultivate young dancers to reach their fullest potential while dancing alongside professional and pre-professional dancers from the most renowned dance programs in the country.
Whether a child is looking for intense training to launch a career, or is yearning to learn and perform on stage, the discipline and skills acquired through these programs will benefit them in every aspect of their future.
History of the Orpheum Dance Program
September 2014 The Catskill Mountain Foundation offered space so Victoria could continue to coach two talented, young local dancers.
December 2015 The first annual Catskill Mountain Foundation Nutcracker is presented at the Orpheum Theater in Tannersville
December 2016 the Nutcracker is expanded to 4 performances
September 2017 The Community Dance Program is launched
December 2018 The Community Nutcracker celebrates its 4th anniversary, participation has tripled.
August 2019 a second community performance is planned. A Midsummer Night's Dream will be the first production of the Orpheum Dance Program
Director, Victoria Rinaldi
Victoria Rinaldi has had an eclectic, exciting dance career that has spanned over twenty-five years, affording her a first hand view of the behind the scenes world of opera, dance and music. She started her professional dance career in her native Washington D.C. with the Washington Ballet. She deviated from the straight ballet path when she became a member of the New York City Opera Ballet at Lincoln Center where she performed featured roles for a decade in everything from grand opera, ballet to musical comedy. Miss Rinaldi performed regularly as a guest artist with ballet companies worldwide and was featured in the Broadway musical On Your Toes. In 1990 Victoria Rinaldi was invited to join the Metropolitan Opera Ballet.
At the Metropolitan Opera, she danced solo roles in countless productions. While working with the Met she was also a member of the “Daring Project,” a group of elite dancers from major companies working with choreographer, Margo Sappington, and touring worldwide. Victoria is featured in Daring Project, a documentary about the company and the lives of its dancers by award-winning film maker, Becky Smith. After retirement and a move to the Hudson Valley, Victoria returned to a local ballet class simply to stay in shape. The students and their parents could see she had been a professional, and asked for corrections and advice. The training offered in these classes would not get a talented child to their goals, so she selected two young dancers to coach.
The following year the Catskill Mountain Foundation stepped in with studio space. In 2015 the Catskill Mountain Foundation and Victoria Rinaldi produced the first Community Nutcracker at the Orpheum Theater in Tannersville. The Nutcracker has grown each year and has introduced hundreds of children to ballet. Because of the success of The Nutcracker children on the mountain top wanted to learn to dance so a Community Dance Program started. August 2019 will mark the premiere of the Orpheum Dance Program with A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
A year-round program offering instruction in dance to children of all ages and abilities.
7 Week Fall Session begins September 17!
Your child will have the opportunity to learn and have fun. Classes will be conducted by Victoria Rinaldi or Hillary Jackson.
- Tuesdays: Ballet 1, 4:00 - 5:00 | Ballet 2 & 3, 5:15 - 6:45
- Thursdays: Ballet 1, 4:00 - 5:15 | Ballet 3, 5:15 - 6:45
(schedules subject to slight change)
Classes will be held at the Red Barn in Hunter
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org for schedule, tuition and registration information
The Nutcracker, an annual Holiday classic, performed at The Orpheum Film & Performing Arts, features students of Victoria Rinaldi’s Orpheum Dance Program and local children and adults, along with pre-professional dancers from Petrov Ballet School.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
A Midsummer Night’s Dream makes it debut on the Orpheum stage August 17, 2019, featuring local children and students of the Orpheum Dance Program.
Auditions! Be part of the summer enchantment!
OPEN AUDITION: Monday, July 1, 11 AM - 1 PM
No dance experience necessary.
The Orpheum Film & Performing Arts Center
6050 Main Street, Tannersville, NY 12485
For information, e-mail Victoria Rinaldi at email@example.com. Be ready to rehearse once a week. Rehearsal schedules to be announced at the audition
Freeda Electra Handelsman
Freeda Electra Handelsman, Christmas Star and Arabian Dance, Catskill Mountain Foundation Nutcracker 2016, began her training in classical dance with Victoria at 14. She has gone on to study with the Washington Ballet, American Ballet Theater, The Ailey School and Alonzo King Lines Ballet. Freeda is currently studying dance at CalArts University and has just finished the second year of her BFA. This summer she will participate in an international festival/workshop "Camping in Paris." She will also attend the HJS summer intensive in Amsterdam. Next fall Freeda will study abroad as an exchange student at the Zurich University of the Arts in their BA Contemporary Dance Program.
Orlando Harbutt, 17, Nutcracker prince, Catskill Mountain Foundation Nutcracker 2015, 2016. Orlando has just finished his first year as a scholarship student and the youngest member of the dance department at the Julliard School. This summer he will attend the arts umbrella professional training program in Vancouver Canada.
Sydney Henson age 15, Clara, Catskill Mountain Foundation Nutcracker 2015-2017. Sydney started training with Victoria at 11. She has participated in American Ballet Theater and Washington Ballet Summer Intensives and won scholarships to K-Arts South Korea, Brussels International Ballet School and La Sylphide Ballet School in Bucharest. This summer Sydney will attend the Royal Ballet Summer Intensive in London.
Hopes for the Future
The Catskill Mountain Foundation and Victoria Rinaldi share in the belief that the Orpheum Dance Program has and will continue to foster elite local talent to exciting careers in dance. The ODP will create the next generation of dancers, fans and supporters through the community programs it offers. In addition the ODP hopes to establish a yearly Orpheum Summer Dance Intensive and Festival that will continue to enrich not only the community but visitors far and wide.