Peabody 11-year-old on the move


Peabody’s Sarah Fogarty, 11, danced in the Northeast Youth Ballet’s “Nutcracker.”


PEABODY Sarah Fogarty is not your average 11-year-old. She has been dancing since she was just two, and already knows a wide range of dances, from tap to hip hop.

She is also talented in ballet, and has capitalized on it with a recent role in The Nutcracker, put on by the Northeast Youth Ballet.

Fogarty, a Peabody resident, played the role of a naughty cookie in The Nutcracker from Thursday, Dec. 10 to Sunday, Dec. 13. She did three shows, performing at the J. Everett Collins Center for Performing Arts in Andover.

“I really liked ballet and I wanted to do another performance,” Fogarty said, explaining why she wanted to participate in The Nutcracker.

According to a release from the Northeast Youth Ballet, Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker “is the enchanting journey of a young girl named Clara in 1835 Germany who embarks on an adventure through a winter wonderland to a palace of sugary sweets.” The show featured the talents of more than 130 dancers who auditioned from the Greater Boston area, with international guest artists from France, China, Italy, Columbia and New York.

Fogarty said she was in The Nutcracker last year as well, and also played a cookie – a good one. She clarified the difference between the cookie roles: The naughty cookies do tricks and don’t go under the dress in one scene. Fogarty’s mother, Heather, said her daughter would do cartwheels and blow kisses to the crowd instead of going under the dress for her role.

“I like being the naughty cookie,” Fogarty said. “Another girl tells me that I need to get back under the dress so she pulls me back under the dress. I liked the role this year. I was excited to do tricks in it.”

The scene Fogarty is referring to is when the character, Mother Ginger, has all of her children underneath her giant hoop skirt. One by one, the children come out from underneath the skirt to dance and when ushered back to the skirt, one child, or cookie, refuses to come back and instead mimes to the crowd.

Fogarty said she practiced every Sunday since October for the role. Dance is part of her life. She competes in other types of dances including jazz, tap, contemporary, acro, musical theater and hip hop. She said jazz competitions start in March.

For those dances, Fogarty attends the Helene Joy School of Dance. She is thinking of broadening her training next year — a decision which might hinder her ability to perform in The Nutcracker again.

“If I’m able to do The Nutcracker, I will,” Fogarty said. “If I have the chance to do more dances in company next year on Sundays, I will do that.”

The older Fogarty said it’s exciting to watch her daughter perform. She said her daughter loves to dance and works really hard at it, dancing three to four times a week.

“It makes us very proud to see her on stage,” Heather Fogarty said.

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