By Mark Abrams

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The work of a group of young musicians at the Andrew Jackson school in South Philadelphia is the inspiration for a new ballet set to debut later this month at the Wilma Theater.

The choreographer and the composer for Ballet X dance company visited the school looking for inspiration for the next production.

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They found it in the classroom of Chris Argerakis, the music teacher and rock band director.

“They’ve gotten their input as far as some choreography, even some things that the heard the kids play as far as some folk songs and they’ve incorporated that.”

Argerakis says the band includes guitars, drums, bass and a few singers – all of whom are excited to be part of the project.

Among them, Vanny Hean, an eighth-grader whose family came to this country from Cambodia.

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“Oh, it’s a regular band. I thought it would just be an outlet, you know, for kids to play.”

But Hean found out it will be much more.

The Andrew Jackson band will play in the lobby of the Wilma Theater as the warm-up for each night of the ballet’s run – November 16th through 20th.

Reported by Mark Abrams, KYW Newsradio 1060

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