Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Nutcracker

Tonight, I was treated to my "first" Christmas present from Wade and Princess: tickets to The Nutcracker! It was another one of those artistic versions (most seem to be) that has changes from the original. The one that plays in Toronto (The National Ballet) is fairly "true" to the original (set in Imperial Russia, crazy uncle brings weird nutcracker as a gift), except that a brother joins his sister on the adventure. Having a brother and sister go on the adventure changes the dynamic. The one that came through my town (a travelling troupe) sets this version in Ontario with a little girl named Klara; a schoolmate destroys the Nutcracker instead of her brothers; instead of a mouse-king there's a bat-king; instead of the land of sweets there's Algonquin Park in Ontario; instead of the sweets and foods there are different animals (the squirrels were played by very cute little children; the loons were graceful; and the raccoons were entertaining); and instead of a Sugar Plum Fairy there was a beautiful "Lady Birch". I was a little skeptical, but it worked. Being a mobile travelling ballet, they did not have the same stage set-up that The National Ballet in Toronto has, nor the live accompaniment. But it's still a great tale and was creatively and well-performed.

As for my absence in posting, it was a combination of busy-ness and laziness! :) I'll post pictures from cookie baking with some kids I know soon so you can see one of the reasons I was busy! In the meantime, being in a Nutcracker kind of mood, I think I'll go back to humming The Waltz of the Flowers (probably my favourite) and the catchy Russian Dance. And of course, everyone knows the Sugar Plum Fairy's solo:

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