★★★★✰ If you find the combination of contemporary dance and musical form entrancing, this program is for you.
Tag - The Hard Nut
★★★★★ The house was abuzz on Friday evening for the opening performance of Mark Morris Dance Group’s The Hard Nut. It’s been five years since Cal Performances hosted the production, and clearly fans had been anxiously awaiting its reappearance.
★★★★✰ Few alternative takes on tradition survive this long and The Hard Nut remains as subversive as it is satisfying.
As with the Balanchine version, the Hard Nut’s success is a foregone conclusion.
So far this season I’ve seen three “traditional” Nutcrackers: Ratmansky’s version for American Ballet Theatre, Gelsey Kirkland’s, and the familiar and much-loved 1954 staging by George Balanchine for New York City Ballet. All three have their charms...
I always enjoy The Hard Nut even though there isn’t a lot of choreography.
It is something of a cliché to say it, but the guiding principle of Morris’s Dido - as in the more recent Socrates - is simplicity. No single element - musc, words, dance - is privileged above the others.
Once in a while we experience one of those serendipitous evenings in which we show up with few expectations, only to encounter an oasis of structure, understated virtuosity and, best of all, musical intelligence.