This is a special year for Dance Wisconsin; JoJean Retrum is celebrating 40 years of her classic version of the original Nutcracker in Shannon Hall on the UW-Madison campus.
Dancing from the area is Kristiana Hinzmann, daughter of Shelley Roelke, dancing role of a mouse in the production.
Performances will take place Saturday, Dec. 17 at 2 p.m and 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 18 at 2 p.m. at the Wisconsin Union Theater. The Tchaikovsky score will be performed by the Dance Wisconsin orchestra and conducted by Taras Nahirniak.
The Monona Grove High School singers will accompany several pieces. Guest Artists are Gillian Murphy and Marcelo Gomes, principal dancers with American Ballet Theatre. They will be joined by the Dance Wisconsin Company and dancers from numerous southern Wisconsin studios.
Many alumni from the past years have returned to perform in this holiday tradition. The ballet begins at the home of the Silberhaus family on Christmas Eve. Friends of Clara and Fritz have been invited for Christmas festivities. Clara’s uncle Herr Drosselmeyer appears with his handsome nephew, gifts, and a special nutcracker doll for Clara.
After the party guests leave, Clara sneaks downstairs in search of her nutcracker and falls asleep on the sofa. Clara begins to dream that she is awakened to find herself surrounded by huge mice making mischief in the parlor. The Christmas tree begins to grow and the Nutcracker doll comes to life and battles with the mice.
After the Mouse King is slain, Clara is transported to a fantasy land where the Snow Queen and King perform for her. The spell that enchanted the Nutcracker doll is broken, and he is transformed into a handsome prince. Clara and the prince travel together to Candyland.
To purchase tickets visit the Wisconsin Union Theater Box Office located at 800 Langdon Street, call (608) 265-ARTS or buy online at www.uniontheater.wisc.edu