The Metropolitan Repertory Ballet (MRB) puts the sweet back in Suite when they bring the rarely seen Russian version of The Nutcracker Suite to the Westminster Arts Center at Bloomfield College. Based on the original production commissioned by Tsar Nicholas II in latter half of the 19th century, this performance includes a selection of pieces from the complete, two-act ballet and runs a little under 90 minutes.
This shortened ballet is especially tailored to families with an earlier curtain time and an opportunity for children to take the stage during the start of the program. Managing Director Greg Allen noted that with the myriad of choices this time of year in holiday performances, he wanted to offer patrons something different. And, the show is very family friendly with children as young as 5 expected to enjoy it.
Although the most well known American version of The Nutcracker was choreographed by George Balanchine for the New York City Ballet, that production deviated from the Russian version. In the original coming of age story the protagonist’s name was Marcia not Clara, and she danced with the dolls she received as gifts rather than with such objects as candy canes and chocolate that the American production introduced.
The original Russian ballet, based on the novella, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, by E.T.A. Hoffmann, remains the standard version all across Europe, and now an American audience has a chance to compare.
The Nutcracker Suite
Who: Ages 5 and up.
What: The original Russian ballet, The Nutcraker Suite, performed by the Metropolitan Repertory Ballet.
Where: Bloomfield College Westminster Arts Center, 449 Franklin Street (corner of Franklin and Fremont Streets), Bloomfield, NJ.
When: Thursday, December 16 at 7:30 pm.
Cost: General Admission is $20, Seniors/Students are $15. To make reservations call 973.748.9008 x279 or purchase tickets here.