November 26, 1990 |
The makers of The Nutcracker Prince, an animated feature that is all sugar and certainly no plum, had the poor judgment to release their film against king-size competition. Their innocuous reading of the E.T.A. Hoffman story that inspired Tchaikovsky's beloved ballet is shot with a very candied camera and it arrives in the marketplace to face a double salvo from the Disney studio. The prince may come to life to vanquish the Mouseking, but he's no match for the return of Mickey Mouse in The Prince and the Pauper - not to mention the mighty mice in The Rescuers Down Under.
November 24, 1993 |
You heard it here first. Macaulay Culkin will not star in a holiday blockbuster this year. He is, however, in the new film version of "The Nutcracker. " Grownups be warned: If the little ones try to convince you to take them to see their half-pint hero, make certain they understand this is not "Home Alone" in tutus. In fact, for a while, all Mac does is a lot of shaking hands and smiling. When he actually does move, the difference between a pas de deux with a fragile ballerina and clobbering Joe Pesci with a bunch of bricks can't be overstated.
December 13, 1987 |
Not to worry. The heroine of The Nutcracker still will triumph over the terrible seven-headed Mouse King and win, as her reward, a vision of beautiful dancing in the Land of Sweets. But this year she will be accompanied in her travails and triumphs by a live, dancing Nutcracker doll, who will change into a handsome prince and escort her to meet the Sugar Plum Fairy. The addition of the child's role of the Nutcracker-Prince is just one of many changes in the Pennsylvania Ballet's new production of The Nutcracker, which opens Wednesday at the Academy of Music and runs through Jan. 2. The production marks the fulfillment of a dream for artistic director Robert Weiss, who has long wanted to bring Philadelphia the complete Balanchine production, created by the great choreographer for the New York City Ballet in 1954, which includes a Nutcracker-Prince.
May 11, 2013 |
Pennsylvania Ballet revived Carnival of the Animals on Thursday at the Academy of Music, and it continues to be a delightful, colorful piece that, like ballet, transforms characters into other beings. Written and narrated on stage by John Lithgow, and choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon to music by Camille Saint-Saëns, Carnival is the story of a boy, Oliver Pendleton Percy the Third (the personable Lucas Tischler, notable in winters past as both Fritz and the Nutcracker Prince)
December 14, 1990 |
"Now this is a ballet I know inside and out," says Christopher d'Amboise of George Balanchine's production of The Nutcracker, which the Pennsylvania Ballet will perform at the Academy of Music for three weeks beginning tonight. D'Amboise, artistic director of the company, could have added that he knows the ballet from the front, side and back, too. He's seen it from the front as a member of the audience. He's seen it from the side wings as a dancer with the New York City Ballet, while waiting to perform any number of roles during the ballet's marathon run. But he has mostly seen The Nutcracker from the rear, because as a child he played the Nutcracker Prince and saw all the divertissements of the second act while sitting on a throne at the back of the stage.
December 5, 1991 |
A principal dancer from New York's Joffrey Ballet will guest-star as the Nutcracker Prince in the New Horizon Dance School's production of The Nutcracker. Scott Jovovich spent this past summer teaching at the school in Northeast Philadelphia while he was home visiting his family in the city. Jovovich choreographed this production, which includes more than 100 students from the dance school. He's stealing time away from the Joffrey to dance the role of The Nutcracker for two performances: Saturday and Dec. 14 at 7:30 p.m. Scott Warren, a member of the school's ballet company and an assistant choreographer, will perform the role for the other four performances.
December 3, 1989 |
Young performers will be starring in an old favorite when the Children's Ballet Theatre of Voorhees performs Tchaikovsky's holiday dance, The Nutcracker, this Wednesday through next Sunday at the Voorhees Middle School in Voorhees. However, one other long-running local production of the The Nutcracker will not be seen this year. The Mount Laurel Regional Ballet, which has presented the ballet for the past 16 years, has suffered cuts in state funding and will not be able to stage a production of the show this year, said Lorraine McAdams, artistic director of the group.
December 12, 2012 |
When Pennsylvania Ballet opened its 25th season of performing George Balanchine's full-length Nutcracker Saturday at the Academy of Music, there undoubtedly were people in the audience who were seeing it for the 25th year in a row. So what's to return for after all this time? Like a favorite holiday movie, repeat viewings only add to the comfort and joy. Even when you know what's coming, you're likely to get chills when it begins to snow onstage. And unlike, say, White Christmas or Love Actually , you'll see different things each time as the casting changes.
December 7, 2015 |
There are Disney princesses by the dozen for girls to dream about, but far fewer role models for petit princes. Still, Zy'Ear Irving knows what it's like to be royalty. The 11-year-old from South Philadelphia is one of three boys playing the Nutcracker Prince in Pennsylvania Ballet's George Balanchine's The Nutcracker , which opens Friday at the Academy of Music (information at paballet.org). It is his second year in the role. A sixth grader at the Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School, Zy'Ear lives with his grandparents, Cheryl and Bobby Irving, and teenage sisters Izhan'e and Bobbi, and has studied ballet in school since first grade.
December 13, 1986 |
The Nutcracker is the great paradox of dance. Because this Tchaikovsky classic is a national holiday tradition, one thinks of it as existing in perpetual calm and well-being. The facts are quite different, however: It was born in 1882 with what many critics and choreographers regard as serious defects, and, as a result, the ballet has been tinkered with like no other in the repertory. This month, three major productions of The Nutcracker will have been seen in Philadelphia, each providing a different view of the ballet.