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Dance Fredericton takes the Nutcracker to the stage

As we approach the end of the year, it is a nice idea to enjoy art that reflects the cold weather and festive mood. Dance Fredericton is presenting an option for that, as they will be performing the Nutcracker on Nov. 28 and 29 at The Playhouse.

A timeless classic, the musical score by Tchaikovsky has many different adaptations. This production of the Nutcracker, however, features original choreography created for Dance Fredericton.

“We thought Fredericton should have its own version of the Nutcracker,” said Janis Thomson. The choreography was developed by a teacher from the Royal Winnipeg Ballet school, and was progressively developed until its completion in the past few years.

“What you see on the stage is different from the Nutcracker you would see anywhere else,” Thomson said.

Despite being Fredericton’s original, the production still holds true to its Victorian style. Set in 1895, everything from the set, costumes, hairstyles and jewelry is Victorian.

This year marks the ninth year that Dance Fredericton has been presenting their annual production of the Nutcracker. Even though things like the set and choreography have changed slightly from year to year, Thomson says that there is a consistency to the production that the audience will recognize.

“This year we have a new gingerbread house that will wow the audience. But as far as the dances themselves, the audience will be looking for something we normally offer.”

The local audience might also enjoy noticing the progression of Dance Fredericton’s the Nutcracker. “They’ll see things that are familiar. They might notice the set, or the dancers from the past year.”

Because the dancers from Dance Fredericton stay with the team for a long time, you might recognize the progression of individual dancers as they move on to different roles within the play.

Along with Dance Fredericton, four guest soloists will be decorating the stage. One of the main performances by the guest soloists will be in the second act’s pas de deux. Two of the guests, Alanna McAdie and Yosuke Mino, are from Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet Company.  The other two, Louis Phillip Lion and Anton Lukyanov, were dancers with the Atlantic Ballet Theatre and play the roles of Drosselmeyer and Mouse King, respectively.

Filled with extravagant costumes, dolls, and animals, the Nutcracker ballet production promises to bring the original fairy tale to life.

“It’s a really magical piece. It’s our gift to Fredericton.”

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