Behind the Curtain of Holiday Classics
Dec 04, 2011 11:05PM
● By Anonymous
In the land of dreams anything is possible. So, when young Clara falls asleep after a Christmas Eve party at her home, she embarks on a fantastic adventure with larger-than-life toys, dancing sugar plum fairies, an evil mouse king, and her beloved Nutcracker Prince. The two-act 18th-century ballet, which originated in Russia, has been a staple in ballet companies during the holiday season. Fortunately for Annapolitans, the Ballet Theatre of Maryland (BTM) is performing its rendition of the The Nutcracker this season at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, December 10th–11th and 17th–18th.
In fact, the BTM has been performing versions of the famed ballet for the past 30 years. “This is our biggest event. The spirit of the holidays and the music of Tchaikovsky are just magical,” says artistic director Dianna Cuatto. “The original version we perform features a lot more dancing and a more fluid storyline.”
The lead role of the Nutcracker Prince is shared by Joshua Burnham and Brian Walker, and the role of young Clara is shared by Erica Wong, Kathryn Carlson, and Nicole Kelsch. Part of what makes the BTM’s The Nutcracker so special is its Sugar Plum Parties where patrons have the opportunity to meet their favorite character before the show.
A Christmas Carol
Originally a novella by author Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol tells the well-known story of Ebenezer Scrooge’s transformation from grouchy businessman to joyful family man after a visit from three ghosts during the holiday season in England. Performing a nonmusical stage adaption of the story is the Pasadena Theatre Company (PTC) at the Chesapeake Arts Center in Brooklyn Park, December 2nd–4th.
Since the 1840’s, A Christmas Carol has remained popular entertainment during the holiday season and encompasses important lessons that everyone can benefit from regarding money, love, and the spirit of giving. The holiday story is appropriate for all ages.
For more information about these productions, visit balletmaryland.org, mdhallarts.org, and ptcshows.com. And don’t forget to flip to our regional theater guide on page 92 for expanded listings of all December productions.