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 Post subject: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2002 8:43 am 
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Today is the day for articles previewing various holiday dance performances in the Boston area.

In the Boston Globe, staff members interviewed the artistic directors of Boston Ballet, Jose Mateo's Dance Theatre, Massachusetts Youth Ballet, and the Jeannette Neill Dance Studio for comments on their Nutcracker performances. See "Secrets of The Nutcracker".

And in the Boston Herald, Theodore Bale writes about a variety of dance performances, most Nutcracker but also some alternatives. See Variety can be a moving experience.


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2002 10:27 am 
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See last week's Boston Phoenix for an article in which Jeffrey Gantz writes about children performing as Polichinelle's in Boston Ballet's Nutcracker.


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2002 9:02 am 
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Jeffrey Gantz writes about Boston Ballet's Nutcracker in the Phoenix:

Quote:
.... Boston Ballet’s Nutcracker doesn’t stint on spectacle and special effects — most notably the Christmas tree that rises like Jack’s beanstalk — but it’s the detail and the dancers that keep audiences coming back. ....
More...


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2002 9:05 am 
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The Boston Globe's North suburban section describes some regional Nutcracker performances.

See: Nutcracker devotees offer some fresh looks at a holiday favorite


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2002 9:01 am 
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Boston Ballet's Nutcracker opened formally last night. Theodore Bale reviewed it in today's Boston Herald:

Quote:
"Nutcracker" Starts Strong

.... Last night's performance offered a sparkling, dynamic first act, mainly due to the swashbuckling interpretation of Drosselmeyer by Viktor Plotnikov and a breathtaking "Snow" pas de deux from Sarah Lamb and Gael Lambiotte.

The second act, unfortunately, sagged exactly when it should have peaked, making the ballet's conclusion lackluster.
More...

(Note: The Boston Globe reviews will be published in tomorrow's paper, due to producton and deadline problems. Check back then.)


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2002 9:05 am 
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Jose Mateo's Nutcracker opened last night. Vicki Sanders reviwed it in the Boston Herald.

Quote:
Mateo's classic show satisfies

Watching Jose Mateo's Ballet Theatre perform "The Nutcracker" is like being inside a snow globe.

The intimate Sanctuary Theatre helps create the illusion that the audience itself is part of the fantasy and is suddenly face to face with the Snow Queen and Nutcracker Prince and Mother Ginger and the whole magical cast of the Tchaikovsky-scored Christmas classic.
[url=http://www.bostonherald.com/entertainment/arts_culture/nut212062002.htm]

More...[/url]


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2002 9:47 pm 
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Location: New England
It certainly heartening to have received such a positive review (I dance for Jose Mateo).

I think the comment about ensemble dancing was quite true. Although much prestiege comes with solo dancing, I find Mateo's ensemble work quite intruiging. It's also MUCH harder to arrange and choreograph ensemble work. Classically, the corps didn't do so much, just the lead dancers. That all changed with Balanchine.

<small>[ 12-07-2002, 22:08: Message edited by: citibob ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2002 8:54 am 
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Christine Temin's review of Boston Ballet's Nutcracker appeared in today's Globe. (I think she likes it!)

Quote:
Thursday's press opening of Boston Ballet's "The Nutcracker"' was the finest, most cohesive performance of the Christmas classic that I've seen the company give. (This is the troupe's 39th "Nutcracker" season. Loath though I am to admit it, I've been there for them all.)
More...


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2002 8:58 am 
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And Thea Singer reviewed Jose Mateo's Nutcracker in today's Boston Globe:

Mateo's sweet choreography transforms dreamy 'Nutcracker'


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2002 9:06 pm 
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That URL to Mateo's Nutcracker didn't work. Here's a working URL:

Mateo's sweet choreography transforms dreamy 'Nutcracker'
By Thea Singer, Globe Correspondent, 12/7/2002

Quote:
The Sanctuary Theatre, in the Old Cambridge Baptist Church in Harvard Square, seems designed for Jose Mateo's "Nutcracker." It's spacious in a vertical kind of way, with its soaring, vaulted ceiling and its steep risers for seating. The audience, comprising 250 at most, seems to hover over the 39-by-49-foot stage. The space, like Mateo's version of the holiday tale, builds volume out of layers, the way a wedding cake does, rather than through adornments, as most versions of "The Nutcracker" are wont to do.

Here the story of young Clara and her Nutcracker Prince unfolds through the dancing. And the dancing, in true classical form, springs from the music (Tchaikovsky's famous score) and is concerned first and foremost with structure, dynamics, and proportion.

You know this ''Nutcracker'' is different from the start...
More...

<small>[ 12-07-2002, 22:07: Message edited by: citibob ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2002 9:16 am 
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Theodore Bale discusses BalletRox founder Anthony Williams, and the company's "Urban Nutcracker" in today's Boston Herald:

Williams stages ‘Urban’ ballet


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Sun Dec 15, 2002 4:22 pm 
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One of the alternative holiday celebrations in Boston area is the Christmas Revels, a celebration of the winter solstice with singing, dancing, and other entertainments. Each year there is somewhat different theme. Keith Powers writes about it in the Boston Herald:

Quote:
The Christmas Revels, Friday evening at Sanders Theatre. Program runs through Dec. 29.

There's certainly nothing else like the Christmas Revels.

The annual solstice celebration, a Boston tradition for more than two decades, opened Friday evening at Sanders Theatre.

This program celebrates musical traditions from Armenia and Soviet Georgia, showcasing musical, dance, storytelling and just plain entertainment traditions.
More...


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Tue Dec 17, 2002 2:50 pm 
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Thea Singer reviews the Massachusetts Youth Ballet's Nutcracker in today's Boston Globe:

Quote:
The Massachusetts Youth Ballet's version of "The Nutcracker," with choreography by Carter Alexander, embodied - perhaps more than any other production in the Boston area - the qualities of innocence and imagination that shape E.T.A. Hoffman's classic story.
More...


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2002 12:07 am 
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Location: Boston, MA, USA
Every year, I attend at least two different performances of the Nutcracker. This year, I am aiming at a record: six, maybe seven. It's all for journalism, as I am keeping notes on everything.

So far, I've attended versions presented by the following:

Ballet Arts Centre (BAC), Winchester

Kathy McCrohon Dance Center, Wellesley

Massachusetts Youth Ballet (MYB), Weston

The performances by the first two of these were characterized by more enthusiasm than skill, but I was very impressed by the Massachusetts Youth Ballet.

One thing that all three Nutcrackers had in common: an alarming shortage of male performers. In the BAC version, a party dad was sadly miscast as the Nutcracker Prince, but they did import a very capable dancer from Snappy Dance Theatre for Arabian. He was under-utilized, though.

The Kathy McCrohon Nutcracker was practically all-female, including Fritz, Drosselmeyer, and the party fathers. Their Prince was a boy of about 8, who did some decent tour jetes, but was later called upon to lift Clara, who was about 5 years older and nearly a foot taller than him. He did not have the upper body strength, but that didn't stop him from trying. Clara was visibly anxious as she slipped from his arms.

The MYB boys are in their teens, and they are standouts. I have attended many MYB performances in the last few years, so I have watched all of the students literally grow, in skill as well as size. All of the dancing in the MYB Nutcracker was good, much was excellent, and some was extraordinary. Ilya Kozadayev, on loan from Boston Ballet, performed some truly astonishing grand jetes and pirouettes role as the Cavalier.


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 Post subject: Re: Nutcracker and not in Boston 2002
PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2002 12:33 am 
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Six? Six?! You have my sympathies... :)

But seriously, thank you so much for your analysis. I wish more members would do that. Some people attend only one Nutcracker every year and they don't know what they're missing.


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