I am very excited to be attending the advance showing of The Goh Ballet’s sixth annual The Nutcracker production this year. The performance will feature live music by the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, and a cast composed of over 200 dancers, including Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre, Paloma Herrera; and Royal Winnepeg Ballet soloist, Dmitri Dovgoselets.
This piece is a traditional rendition of E.T.A Hoffman’s fairy tale “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King”, and takes guests on a delightful adventure as main character Clara’s dream of her new wooden Nutcracker comes to life. When giant mice attack Clara, her brave Nutcracker and his army of life-sized toy soldiers come to her rescue. The Mouse King corners the Nutcracker and a one-on-one battle ensues. After the defeat of the Mouse King, the Nutcracker is transformed into a handsome prince, and whisks Clara away on a journey into the Land of Snow. There they meet enchanting characters such as the Snow Queen and Snow King. The Nutcracker then takes Clara across the Lemonade Sea to the Kingdom of Sweets, where they are greeted by the Sugar Plum Fairy. A feast is held in Clara’s honour and many dances from around the world are performed to entertain her. Clara is then awakened by her mother, and left to wonder if her grand adventure was only a dream.
Award winning set and costume designers Dinghao Zhang and Ming Li of China have designed the intricate props, settings and costumes for this year’s production, and the massive backdrops have all been hand-painted with thousands of brush strokes. They’ve added ‘magical’ properties to some of the prop and costume pieces for the use of the character Drosselmeyer, a magician who’s part is performed by true professional magician and illusionist Damien Carriere.
A costume that I am intrigued to see is the giant dress worn by Mother Ginger in Act 2, which will hold as many as ten gymnasts beneath it, who will then pop out from under the dress for their part of the performance. The costume is so big that it also has to fit a stagehand underneath it to help Mother Ginger, played by professional drag queen Symone (Christopher Hunte), move across the stage!
The Centre, 777 Homer Street, Vancouver (across the street from the Vancouver Public Library Central Branch downtown)
- Dec 18th, 19th & 22nd – 7:30 pm
- Dec 20th – 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm
- Dec 21 – 3:00 pm and 7:30 pm