Windsor High School Student Performs in the University of Hartford’s rendition of ‘The Nutcracker’

Araya Miller, Staff Contributor

Faythe Daly, a Windsor High School freshman, danced in the University of Hartford’s performance of “The Nutcracker” on Dec. 14-16 at the college’s Alfred C. Fuller Music Center’s Millard Auditorium.

Daly is a well-trained ballerina whose passion prompted her to sign up for this show.

Her fight past adversity to continue practicing her art is inspirational to anyone trying to do what they love.

The University of Hartford showcases “The Nutcracker” annually for dancers in their community division. However, the role the dancer receives is based on their talent and skill level. Daly had three parts as Mirliton understudy, a rat, and a Russian.

Just being selected is worth recognizing  as it takes hours of practice to rehearse for the performance. Daly had to practice for two hours each night. Weekend rehearsals were much longer, lasting up to eight hours. Three weeks before the show, tech week, the practices were up to six hours a day.

This is not anything new for Daly though. She has been dancing since she was three years old at the Connecticut Concert Ballet. She made the switch to the University of Hartford’s Community Division last year. She does many forms of dance including ballet, traditional Russian dance, and Armenian dances.

Daly was inspired to do ballet because of her grandmother who also did ballet when she was younger.  However, once Daly started, she loved it so much she never wanted to stop.  

Daly believes that she has learned a lot from dancing, especially discipline, and has become a stronger person from ballet.  Daly says, “I learned discipline and a lot of both physical toughness and mental toughness. You’re constantly criticized and looked at. You have to learn how to deal with that along with just the pain of dancing because point shoes really hurt.” 

While dancing ballet Daly has had some struggles, the most difficult being a bone issue in her left foot that makes dancing increasingly difficult. She must attend physical therapy just to continue to do what she loves and works twice as hard to dance at the same standard as the other ballerinas. 

She advises anyone who wants to do ballet to not focus on their flaws because another one of her struggles with ballet was dealing with criticism. Daly says, “Everyone really looks down at themselves in ballet and they’re like these amazingly talented beautiful people. You just have to love yourself and work really hard to be able to be a really good dancer.”

However, no adversity can stop her from practicing her craft. She loves ballet and performing in front of crowds. Daly says, “When the crowd is like applauding you and you just feel like all your hard work has paid off and you have made all these people happy with your performance. You look beautiful and you feel beautiful.”

Daly wants to incorporate dance in the rest of her life even though she does not want to become a professional ballerina. She wants to continue for all of the high school but is unsure where her talent will take her.Now that “The Nutcracker” is over Daly is just practicing for the University of Hartford’s spring performance from May 29- June 2.

Faythe Daly practicing ballet.