Wednesday, December 7, 2011


Artistic director Robert Mills and company dancer Tye Love in rehearsal for the party scene in
The Nutcracker.  Photo by and c. by Nancy Condit

By Nancy Condit

In case you haven't heard, the Oklahoma City Ballet is presenting The Nutcracker at the Civic Center
Music Hall December 9 - 11 and December 16 - 18.  Each week end includes a 7 p.m. Friday performance, a 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. performance on Saturday and a 2 p.m. performance on Sunday.

The Oklahoma City Philharmonic will perform for each show.

Artistic director Robert Mills’ choreography of the ballet is after the original choreography by Marius Petipa.  “Portions of Petipa’s choreography is seen almost intact during the variations of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier and also in their Grand pas de deux within Act II,” he wrote in an email interview.

Mills cast Clara with members from the company “because I have some ladies in the professional company who are very strong dancers and so petite that they could easily portray a young person like Clara ... With that change, the role of Clara has been made a much more difficult dancing role   Hans, an apprentice toymaker to Drosselmyer, is a new role I added this year to be a ‘love interest’ of Clara’s. Clara and Hans meet for the first time at the holiday party and develop crushes on one another.  When Clara begins to dream after the party, she dreams that Hans is The Nutcracker, and they dance a pas de deux leading into the land of snow, and a second one during the waltz of the flowers.”

The matinee performances feature family activities beginning at 1 p.m.  They include ornament decorating and  drawings for  very special Nutcrackers. the story of the Nutcracker with Mrs. Claus at 1.30 p.m., and a Braum’s Milk & Cookies reception with the dancers after the ballet.

Individual ticket prices range from $10 to $52. Online ticketing is available at, by phone at 405.848.TOES, or at the Civic Center Box Office.

c. Nancy Condit 

For more of the story behind The Nutcracker, see magazine, due out this weekend
or next week.

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