Indiana Ballet Conservatory presents ‘Phantom’


Indiana Ballet Conservatory Artistic Director Alyona Yakovleva has put her own spin on a timeless classic.

IBC will present “Phantom of the Opera” at 4 and 7 p.m. May 25 at The Tarkington at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel.

“When you watch a musical or movie, you can fall in love with the characters but want more than what you see that first time,” Yakovleva said. “As an artist, I tend to expand the stories of what I see. You can always create more background or imagine a different path the characters will take. As a dancer and choreographer, I also see everything in movement and want to express all these emotions and feelings in more impactful ways. ‘Phantom’ is one of those timeless stories that is so rich and layered with emotions that it begs for more – more dance, more exploration of feelings, more reactions. Not only can we bring new, exciting choreography to life, but I have intertwined the most incredible music in this production. The best way to describe it is electrifying.”

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Former IBC student Morgan Rust, who grew up in Noblesville, returns to play the role of Christine.

“IBC is the place where all of my formative training took place,” Rust said. “I grew up with the teachers being family to me, so having them guide me at this stage of my career is an incredible blessing. It also comes with additional layers — I want them to see that all their emotional and physical investment in me is reaping benefits. I want them to trust I will help pass on the knowledge they have shared and continue to share. Ballet is special because it requires the passing down of intimate knowledge, and I have been so blessed with the incredible teachers of IBC who turned into my family. They are leaving an incredible legacy, and I am one of the dancers that has the special duty to pass it on with care.”

Carmel resident Justin Hamilton, who is a high school senior who takes online classes, plays the Phantom.

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“The biggest challenge while rehearsing for the production of “Phantom of the Opera’ is not only learning all the choreography, but also being able to find new ways to interpret the character and convince the audience who Phantom is and what he stands for,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton took a hiatus from ballet at age 13 in 2019 for three years. He returned to IBC in the summer of 2022. He will join the Joffrey Ballet in Chicago as a trainee after graduating.