WEST HARTFORD — Ballet Theatre Company will present its 18th season of “The Nutcracker” at the University of Saint Joseph from Dec. 12 to 15. The favorite holiday classic set to the iconic Tchaikovsky score will once again feature choreography by Artistic Director Stephanie Dattellas.
New to the company’s performance season last year, Dattellas’ “The Nutcracker” is full of surprises in every scene. The Party Scene, set in traditional Victorian era, includes a few added characters special to Dattellas’ staging. Cousin Phineas, relative to Clara and Fritz Stahlbaum causes mischief among the other party children and party adults filling audiences young and old with laughter. Historical guests special to the West Hartford area also join the party as Drosselmeyer’s dancing dolls; Noah Webster and his student Ballerina Doll dance with the famous Blue Back Speller bringing the story a little closer to home. The magic is only beginning when Clara and Fritz find themselves battling breakdancing mice and watch the now life-sized Nutcracker doll transform into a handsome Cavalier.
Clara travels through the Land of the Snow in a whirl of sparkling snowflakes featuring BTC’s Corps de Ballet, and arrives in the Land of the Sweets where she is presented with gifts from all over the world. Local student dancers perform alongside local, regional, and national professional dancers together highlighting the many divertissements of The Nutcracker and showcasing Dattellas’ unique and seamless integration of accomplished professionals and aspiring students. Some favorite dances include the energetic Russian Trepak featuring a male professional lead and 3 young male student dancers, Mother Ginger and her Gingerbread Cookies, and the beautiful “Waltz of the Flowers” that mesmerizes audiences through kaleidoscope movements brought to life by the harmonious waltz.
Aside from offering six magical performances for the public, on the morning of Wednesday, Dec. 11, BTC will perform an abbreviated hour-long version of “The Nutcracker” for nearly 400 school children at the University of Saint Joseph Hoffman Auditorium. BTC is proud to continue this tradition of bringing the magic of live theater to Hartford Public Schools in collaboration with Hartford Performs. That evening, the company will present for the 18th year, “A Children’s Nutcracker,” a full-length performance of BTC’s “The Nutcracker” that is offered exclusively to children from local child advocacy service agencies free of charge. Performances such as these speak to the core of BTC’s mission, inspiring the next generation through the art of performing arts.
Tickets to BTC’s upcoming production of “The Nutcracker” can be purchased online at www.dancebtc.org. Show times are Thursday, Dec. 12 at 6:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 13 at 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 14 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 15 at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. For a chance to catch a sneak peek of excerpts from the performance, check out BTC’s Public Appearance website page and follow BTC on Facebook and Instagram (@dancebtc) for excerpts, fun facts, and chances to win free tickets.