Amazing costumes, a fantastical storyline, dancers of every age and ability, music provided by the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra, and a wildly entertaining evening await you at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center as the Tulsa Ballet presents the final weekend of The Nutcracker through Dec. 23.
Marcello Angelini, Artistic Director of the Tulsa Ballet, goes into detail about what makes this performance one to treasure as a holiday tradition, "The initial intent when creating The Nutcracker was to celebrate the essence of the holiday season which is not candy canes, marzipans, Spanish candy or any other culinary treat...
"The essence of the season is love, so The Nutcracker has to celebrate love that conquers all, love that defeats even the darkest of human fears, embodied by the Mouse King. The best way to do that in my opinion is to see this feeling through the eyes of a young girl, which is what our Nutcracker does."
Everyone is familiar with the dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies, but one might be surprised at the level of energy exerted to maintain the dancing excellence that has come to be associated with the Tulsa Ballet.
"Dancing 'on the edge' is what creates energy on stage and that energy is what the audience perceives from the performers," Angelini said. "So, each section of the ballet is challenging for the dancers and I even added one dance in the first act to lift the party scene up. This part of The Nutcracker tends to have no dancing in it and, in turn, can get a bit wearisome. I also injected the boys in the Snow Scene, adding lots of jumps and athletic moves while making use of the ability to do small duets, varying the choreography and giving a breath to the ladies of the Corps de Ballet."
Tickets start as low as $20 and may be purchased by calling 918-749-6006 or by visiting tulsaballet.org.
Two Last Chances
Two more large-scale performances wrap up their three week runs this weekend. Both of these would be a perfect opportunity to entertain an out of town guest or impress any member of the family with this season's glad tidings.
Over at the Assembly Hall at the Tulsa Convention Center, a great venue that you have to get to know, Horton the Elephant, The Cat in the Hat, and the Grinch make Christmas magic in Seussical the Musical, presented by Tulsa Project Theatre.
More than 50 children play everything from the Whos-down-in-Whoville, to soldiers on parade, to fish in the sea. Many local, recognizable artists play, sing and dance in this family friendly funfest which is sure to delight.
This is Tulsa Project Theatre's first production of the season and tickets range from $22 to $32 and can be purchased online at: tulsaconvention.com or by phoning 877-TULSA-CC. Seussical wraps up its final weekend with performances Dec. 22-23 at 8pm.
The old ghost story, with new choreography, lighting design and music, not to mention that infamous, revolving set, all melt together to weave the story of the Cratchits, and that mean, old miser Scrooge, at the Williams Theatre of the Tulsa PAC as American Theatre Company wraps up A Christmas Carol Dec. 20-23 at 7:30pm. Stick around the lobby after each performance for the "howdy line" and come face to face with the cast. Seeing Grandma shake Jacob Marley's hand will be something to talk about at the family table for years to come.
Tickets can be purchased by calling 918-596-7111 or by visiting: myticketoffice.com.
What's To Come
Perhaps your ho-ho-ho has deflated and is as stale and crusty as last year's fruitcake. Check out the happenings at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center to look forward to in January 2012.
Tulsa Symphony presents Musical Migrations Jan. 7 at the Chapman Music Hall at 7:30pm. The third concert of the season, inspired by ancient dance and song, includes Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2 and Schumann's Rhineland- inspired Symphony No. 3.
Theatre Tulsa presents Clifford Odet's Waiting for Lefty Jan. 13-21 at the Williams Theatre of the TulsaPAC. Set in 1930, this Depression-era tale of corruption and injustice centers around a group of New York taxi drivers.
Choregus Productions bring the intricate rhythms and harmonies of the South African music, expertly mixed with Christian gospel melodies in Ladysmith Black Mambazo at the Chapman Music Hall, Jan. 22 at 7pm.
Also on Jan. 22 at 2pm and 4pm over at the Williams Theatre, Tulsa Children's Museum present Jeff Porter and the Claptet. Inspired by the techniques and rhythms of African and American music, the performers engage children and parents in the global exploration of sound and music.
Celebrity Attractions scares up the dark, deliciously different world of Gomez, his lovely bride Morticia, Uncle Fester, Wednesday, Pugsley, and the faithful Lurch, in the musical The Adams Family, Jan. 24-29 at the Chapman Music Hall.
Chamber Music Tulsa present Miro Quartet on Jan. 29 at 3pm at the Williams Theatre. This group is one of America's highest-profile groups, is currently the Faculty String Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Texas, and according to the New York Times, performs with "explosive vigor and technical finesse."
Tickets for all performances mentioned above can be purchased at myticketoffice.com or by phoning 918-596-7111.
Also of note for January, over at the Broken Arrow Performing Arts Center, there will be a "whole lotta shaking going on" for the Elvis Lives! The Ultimate Tribute Artist Event on Jan. 31 at 7:30pm. This multi-media extravaganza pays homage to Elvis Presley during various stages of his career. The tribute artists will also be joined by a back-up band, singers, dancers, and Ann-Margaret tribute artist, and iconic imagery made available from the Graceland archives. Tickets can be purchased by calling
From my humble laptop to wherever you are graciously checking out my snapshots of all the goodness that is our diverse artistic landscape, I wish you "Happy Everything"... from Christmas to Hanukkah to Kwanzaa to Festivus...hope your season is bright.
Keep these performances in mind through Christmas and New Year's.
And make sure you catch our Jan. 19-25 issue for "Curtains Up, Part II," for all the arts shows through the New Year from central city into and throughout Broken Arrow, Jenks, Owasso, Bixby and the entire the suburban scene.
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