Los Angeles Dance Preview: THE NUTCRACKER SUITE (American Contemporary Ballet)

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by Tony Frankel on December 7, 2017

in Dance,Theater-Los Angeles


Before you grumble and run screaming, “Not another Nutcracker Suite!” — trust me when I tell you that American Contemporary Ballet has something up its red-fur, white-trimmed sleeve with an all-new imagining that presents new choreography while putting you directly inside the Land of the Sweets. When I was told patrons will spend one dreamlike hour in an ethereal, enchanted land of dancing desserts and snowflakes 350 feet above the city, while fantastical versions of familiar characters surprise and delight throughout the festivities, all I could think was, “Thank you, ACB, for spiking that old egg nog.” This fantastical adventure, where anything can happen, plays December 8-23, 2017.

Traditionalists needn’t fear – those tasty character confections you’ve come to know and love will dance their beloved roles with sprightly new choreography by Artistic Director Lincoln Jones. “Our production is immersive, so it needed new choreography. For one thing, the dancers can enter the stage from more places than just the conventional side approaches” Jones said. “Also, I’m much more fascinated by the original E.T.A. Hoffman tale than the Alexandre Dumas revision that is used for most productions. I wanted to bring some of those original themes more to the fore.”

For those who don’t know, this small but mighty company is as committed to music as it is to dance. That means Jones not only offers the finest dance company in L.A., as skilled and in some ways even more proficient than American Ballet Theater and other contemporaries, but he commissions original arrangements which are played live by stunning musicians in the style of chamber salons. This means that Tchaikovsky’s gorgeous music will be played live by musicians seated directly behind viewers.

Watching ACB’s gloriously sumptuous ballerinas will put you in the holiday spirit, so stick around after the magic to mingle with the Sugar Plum fairy and her dreamy dewdrops and candied cohorts while consuming hot cocoa. Don’t miss this — Jones and Company are busting their nuts busting the same-old Nutcracker wide open for an event that’ll make you nuts.

photo by Will Davidson

The Nutcracker Suite
American Contemporary Ballet (ACB)
The BLOC building, 700 S. Flower St., 32nd Floor
Dec 8 at 7:30; Dec 9 and 10 at 2 & 5;
Dec 15 at 7:30; Dec 16 and 17 at 2 & 5;
Dec 22 at 7:30; Dec 23 at 2
for tickets ($40 – $105), visit ACB Dances

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