Mother’s Day Reflections – 2019

Calli McIntyre first appeared on All Things Moore County in the spring of 2017. Today she is looking forward to her high school graduation and attending The Conservatory of Performing Arts and the honors program at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, to obtain a BFA in musical theatre and a dance minor in jazz. Her mother Noelle is a financial advisor when she is not Calli’s mom. Their relationship is special and their conversation this Mother’s day is a poignant reminder of how quickly time goes by us.

Julia Latham is a non-practicing attorney who has a B.A. in theater and a minor in dance. Julia. She earned her J.D., clerked on the 9-Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced administrative and environmental law in D.C. and Chicago. She is a current board member of Sandhills Pride, our local LGBTQ advocacy organization. She is also a mother of two boys, Max, age 15 and Nik, age 10. Max attends The O’Neal School and is a member of the Junior Beta Club and is active in the school’s theatre program. Max just finished a service project in which he raised $7000 and distributed books about diversity to 100 primary school classroom classrooms. He is fully enrolled in theatre; both thru the Gary Taylor Dance Studio, the Imagine Youth Theatre’s Broadway program, as well as numerous musical theatre productions. His brother Nik is a 5th grader at The O’Neal School and is also actively involved in the Arts. He has been a member of the Gary Taylor Dance Studio since he was 3, and has studied for two summers at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Nik has also been involved with the Sandhills Repertory Theatre Company and the Imagine Youth Theater Productions.

Taylor Dance Nutcracker

A family favorite of the season, Taylor Dance Nutcracker performs at the Robert E. Lee auditorium at Pinecrest High School, Thanksgiving weekend. Choreography is by award-winning Artistic Director, Gary Taylor. Sets are by award-winning designer, Howard Jones. Original costumes are designed by artistic director and founder Rita Taylor. The weekend features three full length performances for all ages.
Friday – Nov. 23rd – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday – Nov. 24th – 2:00 p.m.
Sunday – Nov. 25th – 2:00 p.m.

4 of this years participants include : Calli McIntyre, Colton Libertore, Carolina Mays, and Sarah Costanza.
They are joined by Rita Taylor.

Tickets at :



Ten Thousand Villages is a nonprofit fair trade organization that markets handcrafted products made

by disadvantaged artisans from more than 120 artisan groups in more than 35 countries.

Betty Mangum and Vicki Smith, the Minister of Children & Youth at the Village Chapel fill us in on all the details of this one day event.


Founded in 1948, this club continues to be one of the most recognizable organizations in Moore County.

Kea Capel discusses plans for the 2019 Spring Garden Tour and the wherefore and why of this fine organization.


Calli McIntyre joins me to discuss this upcoming event and many others this fall to highlight the good work of Michael Pizzi, a NYC based & Pinehurst based Director and Actor.

Taylor Dance Studio



A Thanksgiving weekend tradition, Taylor Dance welcomes the holiday season with its magical Nutcracker ballet. Why drive to Charlotte or Raleigh when you can experience a performance of a similar caliber right here at home? It’s the perfect blend of professional artistry with student talent that makes Taylor Dance’s production an unparalleled holiday favorite.

Five of the lead dancers are featured in this show. Mary Costanza, Christa Blades, Calli McIntyre, Caroline Mays and Sarah Costanza.,

A testimonial about Taylor Dance

Ballet is really hard and most people underestimate the physical and mental stamina it takes. There are a lot of kids out there that truly love to dance but are unwilling to accept the “consequences” that come with it. When you are training seven days a week, participating in full day rehearsals on the weekends, perform in multiple productions throughout the year, and spend your summers in a ballet studio, it can limit one’s ability to adequately nurture relationships. She has shed a few people along the way. Some of those relationships I mourn every day. Some, I count as a blessing that they are no longer there. Don’t get me wrong, there have been times that even I asked her to pull back to no avail. Asking her to stop dancing is like asking her to stop breathing.

About two years ago we made significant changes and we found Gary and Rita Taylor. Gary is an artist genius and an incredible ballet teacher. Rita is a powerhouse. Gary and Rita, their son and daughter-in-law, Ryan and Julie, Elizabeth and Christine Fowle and the entire Winston Salem Festival Ballet, High Point Ballet, and Taylor Dance faculty, staff and families took my children in and have nurtured and loved them so much over the last two years. The girls have grown personally and technically by leaps and bounds.

Yes, I am proud, but more than anything I am grateful. I am grateful for wonderful people that love my kids, inspire them, and want to see them succeed at something they love as much as they love to breathe.

I am thankful for my village. They are a group of funny, strong, intelligent, and confident women who not only celebrate their own children’s accomplishments but also support and encourage other children as well.

I am grateful for the professional dancers that the girls work with and learn from. They provide a healthy dose of inspiration and they are positive role models that bring both fun and professionalism to the studio and to the stages in which they so beautifully grace.

-Dana Costanza (mother of Mary & Sarah Costanza)

Some of the talking points these young ladies and Artistic Director Gary Taylor cover are:

  • Choreography for the show-All aspects of the performance are choreographed by Gary. He is a nationally renowned choreographer and has been recognized as such by various awards
  • The scenery or set for The Nutcracker. Valued at over $200,000 and designed by Howard Jones, the internationally renowned Director of Scenic Art and Scene Painting at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, the hand-painted set of “Gary Taylor’s Nutcracker” is visually stunning. Complemented by exquisitely detailed period costumes designed by Executive Director, Rita Taylor, and original choreography by award-winning Artistic Director, Gary Taylor, the entire show is a feast for the eyes.
  • Costuming-All costuming is professional created
  • Faculty at Taylor Dance-All of our faculty are conservatory trained professional dancers who are for the most part still performing.
  • Lighting Designers are from New York.
  • Hidden meanings in The Nutcracker
  • Preparation for the show from the Dancer’s perspective
  • Dancers talk about work/school balance and the rigors of a pre-professional ballet program.
  • Dancers can speak about what it is like to work with the professional dancers that teach them, dance with them and mentor them daily.
  • Opportunities for the dancers after their graduation from the pre-professional program. Where do they go from here?

About Artistic Director – Gary Taylor

Meet Gary Taylor, the Artistic Director of Taylor Dance, High Point Ballet, and Winston-Salem Festival Ballet:

Gary is recognized for his mastery of original works, innovative choreography, partnering, instruction, and performance. Some of his
choreographic awards and recognitions include:

  • Regional Dance America (RDA) National Choreographic Award, for “Dreams” (1999)
  • Outstanding North Carolina Teacher in Performing Arts (1999) by University of North Carolina School of the Arts
  • Regional Dance America (RDA) National Choreographic Commission Award for “Temptation” (2004)
  • Regional Dance of America (RDA) Choreographic Recognition Award for “Angels” (2006)
  • Regional Dance America (RDA) National Festival (2008) Original Ballet, “Last Breath,” performed at the Benedum Theatre in Pittsburg, PA at the National RDA Festival
  • “Last Breath” featured in the February 2008 edition of Pointe Magazine
  • Adjudicator for RDA Northeast & Mid States Festival held in Pittsburgh, PA (2011)
  • Director of the RDA National Choreography Intensive (2010-Present)

Despite his impressive reputation, Gary can still be found in the studio daily, working with our Level 1 students on pointe and partnering, overseeing weekend rehearsals, and even making cameo appearances in “The Nutcracker.”

The original choreography in Gary Taylor’s “Nutcracker” has been refined over thirty years of performances and is a treat for every member of your family. Buy your tickets now by visiting our Facebook page from your desktop or laptop and clicking on “Buy Tickets” on the left menu. If you’re on mobile, then just visit this link: