Nutcracker – a cash cow!

Did you know that the NUTCRACKER Ballet is a money making machine for ballet companies?

I just read an article in The Economist which stated that this ballet can generate up to 45% of a ballet company’s annual revenue in America. That’s why you can see at least one version in every state. It’s a tradition for families to come together and attend a performance of this famous Christmas ballet. Often, children from ballet schools are involved, dancing in the roles of small mice or toy soldiers. Magic happens when the beautiful music of the Waltz of Flowers starts.

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My favourite Drosselmeyers……

are without question Li Cunxin and Dominik Slavkovský.

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Li Cunxin with Queensland Ballet photo by David Kelly

Magic happened when Ballet Star Li Cunxin, was lured out of 18 years retirement for a special performance of the NUTCRACKER with the Queensland Ballet. Taking to the stage in Brisbane for one night only, the 56 year old dancer delivered a mesmerizing performance. While Drosselmeyer is predominately a character role, Li incorporated his own choreography – adding pirouettes and jumps to the performance. His twists and turns hinted at his past brilliance.

Li’s life story became known around the world after the book and film, Mao’s Last Dancer, told how he danced his way out of grinding poverty in China and ultimately ending into an international ballet career.

IMG_0892.jpgDominik Slokovský with Ballet Zurich photo by Gregory Batardon

On the other side of the world, at the Opernhaus Zurich, the young Slovikian dancer Dominik Slavkovský also took the role of Drosselmeyer to new heights. Ballet director Christian Spuck‘s fresh new choreography NUTCRACKER AND MOUSE KING allowed him to create a enigmatic character that captivated the audience as never before.

With his long lanky body and twisting fingers, the mysterious toymaker became a dark, dramatic and quite simply haunting character that guides us through the story.

Fotos
Li Cunxin: David Kelly
Dominik Slavkovský: Gian Paul Lozza and Gregory Batardon

It is Christmas Eve

and Time for Nutcracker

🌅Merry Christmas and happy New Year to all Ballet Lovers🌲

Enjoy these trailers with different interpretations of the most famous Christmas Ballet.

Photo on Top: Nutcracker and Mouse King by Christian Spuck, Ballet Zurich ©Gregory Batardon

5 Christmas gift ideas for Ballet lovers!

It’s only 25 days until Christmas – but there is still enough time to think about Christmas gifts!

Here are my top suggestions for all ballet lovers:

 

Theatre tickets

Invite your ballet loving friend to join you for a live ballet performance and top of the evening with a nice glass of champagne. There’s nothing better than some festive bubbles to enliven your discussion of the performance. The Nutcracker or Swan Lake are perfect ballet choices to get you both in the Christmas mood.

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Pas de Deux der Extraklasse

Iana Salenko und Marian Walter brillieren in Dornröschen

Trotz schlechter Kritiken war ich sehr gespannt auf Nacho Duato’s Dornröschen an der Deutschen Oper in Berlin. Die dortige Ballettszene war 2015 sehr enttäuscht, als der neue Ballettdirektor seinen Einstand mit diesem Ballett gab. Denn die Uraufführung war bereits 2011 am Petersburger Mikhailovsky- Theater erfolgt. Somit wurde das Debutstück als zu wenig mutig, einfallslos und aufgewärmt empfunden.

Ausschnitt mit der Premierenbesetzung: Iana Salenko und Leonid Sarafanov

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Noch nie ein Ballett gesehen?

Meine Empfehlungen für Ballettzuschauer

Ich werde immer wieder gefragt, welches Ballett ich als Einstieg in die Ballettwelt empfehlen würde. Das ist eine schwierige Frage, da die Geschmäcker ja bekanntlich sehr verschieden sind.

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TOP 10 Ballet Photos

These are my favourite Ballet Photos

Prima Ballerina Iana Salenko

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Photo by ballerinaproject in Royal Opera House London

 

Rainer Krenstetter as Loge in Maurice Béjart “Ring um den Ring”

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photo by Staatsballett Berlin

 

Polina Semionova with her little babyboy

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photo on Instgram at polinasemionovaofficial

 

Katja Wünsche and William Moore in Christian Spuck’s “Anna Karenina”

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Juliet Doherty at St. Monica Beach

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photo by ballerinaproject

 

Steven McRae as Mad Hatter in Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland

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photo  by Tim P. Whitby, gettyimages

 

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

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photo by Andrew Eccles

 

Ballet and City Serie

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photo by Vladimir Chikin

 

Polina Semionova and Vladimir Malakhov in L’après-midi du faun by Staatsballett Berlin

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Photo by Staatsballett Berlin

 

4 Ballerina in “Wonderland” – Washington Ballet

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photo by Cade Martin