Nutcracker Holiday Fun

So here we are once again, getting ourselves ready for the Nutcracker season.  I would say it is the most fun part of our season, although I am certain other dancers would adamantly disagree with me.  Let’s see, I tried to do this in the last blog, but it’s anywhere from 20-40 performances a season (this year close to 25) plus four weeks of rehearsals (noon to 6pm) times the number of years I’ve been dancing.  For me it’s been about 660 times.  That’s a lot of Nutcracker music, lol!  But the truth is I love it.  This is the one time in performances you can actually relax a bit (a bit).  It is still a lot of work and preparation, but what I mean by being about to relax is that the movements are ingrained in my body. I do not have to overwhelm myself with unnecessary thoughts or stress about remembering the choreography.  The choreography is permanently in my body.  It’s nearly all muscle memory.  But one of the true highlights for me every year are the kids that join our production….

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With several of the kids from our Nutcracker production in Detroit last December 2008

As for the kids in the production, you can always sense the pure exuberance they feel to be on stage with the Joffrey dancers.  It’s so wonderful for them to see things from our point of view, to be so close to the dancers, and interact with us on stage.  It’s a great feeling to be there with them, to see this spark, this undeniable twinkle in their eyes.  

In truth, it is the kids that enable me to perform.  I’ve been performing Nutcracker for so many years that it is easy to get bored or not give it everything I have when I have to perform over and over again.  But when you are around kids that are so excited to be there, you can’t take anything for granted and you certainly don’t need to worry.  They have plenty of energy to feed the entire company!  You feed off of their energy and you’re reminded why you do what you do.
This year we are starting our run with six performances in St. Louis.  We are one week into rehearsals and I am excited and ready.  I am already working hard with my partner, Valerie Robin, my dance partner for this run.  We have been dancing together on this part (Sugarplum and Prince) for the past 3 years, and we are trying to make our movements look as easy as possible without sacrificing technique.  I am just really excited to perform it once again.  It is the same thing as always, but I always feel like it’s new.   
And as a reminder, you all have four days left to make your choice on the routine you want me to perform in the final solo during the Sugarplum variation.  See my previous blog!  I want to hear from you!!
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Joffrey Nutcracker mice, Washington DC, December 2008

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Joffrey Nutcracker snow angels, Washington DC, December 2008


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  • Hey! Its eliza from Thurs night! It was awsome meeting you let me know when you get that class going in Bucktown!

  • In reply to esiep:

    The classes already started!

  • Classes in Bucktown already on!

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    Hey! It's Suzanne from 2008 and 2010supers t the Kennedy Center!
    I miss this so much!!! I can't wait till the winter!! I think I will be to old to dance as a poli, but my sister might do it again!! Can't wait!!!!

  • In reply to Suzanne Creedon:

    Hi Suzanne
    Miss you guys tons :(

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