"The Nutcracker" tag
Miami City Ballet in The Nutcracker.© Lawrence K. Ho. (Click image for larger version)

Miami City Ballet – The Nutcracker – Los Angeles

★★★✰✰   The MCB dancers exude Balanchine brio and delight in performing his intricate steps, but they had to give their all to keep up with the youngsters.

Steven McRae and Sarah Lamb in The Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Nutcracker – London

★★★★★   When Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker for the Royal Ballet was given its premiere on 20th December 1984, gala guests were treated to free champagne and souvenir booklets. No expense was spared…

Gary Avis and Francesca Hayward in The Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Men in Motion flyer.© Nick Knight. (Click image for larger version)

Ivan Putrov – Men in Motion (2017) – London

★★✰✰✰   All the ingredients seemed promising but the evening was disappointing, struggling to recover from the tedium of the dire opening item…

Cesar Morales.© Andres Cabezas. (Click image for larger version)

Cesar Morales – Principal Dancer, Birmingham Royal Ballet

So how did a good Chilean boy end up dancing ballet in Europe…

Karen Kain + Elena Lobsanva in The Dreamers Ever Leave You.© Karolina Kuras. (Click image for larger version)

‘The Dreamers Ever Leave You’ – Karen Kain on a unique Royal Ballet & National Ballet of Canada collaboration…

Karen Kain, Artistic Director of the National Ballet of Canada, on celebrating Canada’s 150th with a joint work that includes NBoCanada and Royal Ballet dancers in a unique London Docklands event on the 12/13 October… that and lots more

Lauren Cuthbertson in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.© Johan Persson, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – London

★★★✰✰   Wheeldon and his scenarist, Nicholas Wright, have made theatrical sense of a nonsensical children’s classic. This Alice, though, is a modern pantomime, not a classic ballet.

Atlanta Ballet in 2014 feted its artistic director emeritus with a gala ball. Kelsey Ebersold, an apprentice with Atlanta Ballet at the time, is pictured along with Robert Barnett in costume for Barnett's Fascinatin' Rhythm.© Charlie McCullers, courtesy of Atlanta Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Robert Barnett, former New York City Ballet dancer and longtime Artistic Director of Atlanta Ballet

Robert Barnett joined New York City Ballet in 1949. In those early years he worked closely with Balanchine and Robbins particularly before going on to direct Atlanta Ballet. Now 91 he is still actively involved in dance and passing on all he knows…

Alexander Kuiimov in La Fille mal gardée.© Russian State Ballet of Siberia. (Click image for larger version)

Russian State Ballet of Siberia – La Fille mal gardée – Basingstoke

★★★✰✰   The Siberian company performs its Fille mal gardée with good heart and neat feet.

Tamara Rojo in Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s Broken Wings.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Memorable Performances of 2016 – London

Lynette Halewood with her personal selection of London dance memories from the past year…

Dancers leaping downstage from left, Tori Jahn, Colleen Soltys and Alysia Chang in Graham Lustig's Nutcracker.© Dan Dion. (Click image for larger version)

Oakland Ballet Company – The Nutcracker – Oakland

★★★✰✰   Set in early-20th-century Vienna, this Nutcracker is welcoming and unpretentious, and it moves as briskly as a storybook.

Aaron Loux and Billy Smith in The Hard Nut.© Julieta Cervantes. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – The Hard Nut – New York

★★★★✰   Few alternative takes on tradition survive this long and The Hard Nut remains as subversive as it is satisfying.

Alina Cojocaru and James Forbat in Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – English National Ballet in Nutcracker

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in Hope Boykin's r-Evolution, Dream.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – Four Corners, Untitled America, r-Evolution, Dream, Revelations – New York

★★★★✰   There is no limit to how often one can see Ailey’s 1960 masterpiece Revelations. The elation is always the same.

Reina Fuchigami, Arancha Baselga and Ruth Brill in The Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Birmingham Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Lauren Cuthbertson in The Nutcracker.© Tristram Kenton, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Royal Ballet – The Nutcracker – London

★★★★★   The Royal Ballet’s Nutcracker has undergone various changes since its gala premiere in 1984, not least in the central roles of Clara and Drosselmeyer…

Anna Rose O'Sullivan and James Hay in The Nutcracker.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Nutcracker

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Gary Harris.© Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Interview – Gary Harris on life and setting Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia for the Royal Ballet

Gary Harris has had one of the most varied ballet careers you can get… dancer, teacher, ballet master, artistic director, designer and notator. Now he’s working with the Royal Ballet to bring back Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia – Jann Parry went for a chat.

Gary Avis and Friends Flyer - 2016

The Royal Ballet’s Gary Avis & Friends – Dance for Suffolk

Led by Gary Avis and a Royal Ballet all-star cast, the company will perform an especially created programme of Royal Ballet classics, hosted by BBC Strictly Come Dancing’s Anton du Beke.

New York City Ballet in Justin Peck's The Most Incredible Thing.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

New York City Ballet – The Most Incredible Thing (premiere), Polaris, The Blue of the Distance, Common Ground, Estancia – New York

★★★✰✰ “Incredible is Peck’s first narrative, and this fact was obvious Tuesday night, particularly in the opening scenes which lacked clarity…”

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