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Bama Works Fund’s Twinkle Project Teaches Young Stars - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Bama Works Fund’s Twinkle Project Teaches Young Stars

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Tiny ballerinas in Crozet are putting together a performance of dance, music, and art in five days. The Twinkle Project is supported by a grant from the Dave Matthews Band's Bama Works Fund. 

The performers range in age from 6 to 12 years old. Some started Monday with no experience in the arts. Wednesday night, they're halfway through a week of rehearsals to put on a performance based on a classical Mozart piece that every child knows: Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. 

Some tiny stars are shining big and bright inside Dance Studio 3 at Crozet Arts. Eight-year-old Isabella Sonen is a returning performer in the week-long workshop's second summer. "It combines the things I really like," she said. 

Nine students twirl as ballerinas, strum as cellists and rehearse Shakespearean verses as actors. 

"We're creating dance, choreography, theater scenes, instrumental compilations based on constellation stories," said Sharon Tolczyk, artistic director for Crozet Arts. 

For six hours a day the performers are immersed in rehearsals, as their instructors awaken their talents to new forms of art. 

"Pretty soon they're just completely absorbed in the whole thing, and they find themselves doing things they've never done before," Tolczyk said. 

An $8,000 grant from the Bama Works Fund pays scholarships for students and will allow the Twinkle Project to expand. 

"We hope it will also be a production where they move from role to role, so for them it becomes an exciting thing to grow within the production," Tolczyk said. 

The Twinkle Project ends Friday with a performance for families. Crozet Arts hopes to use the Bama Works grant money to put together a bigger performance that can tour around the community.

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