On Christmas Eve, a little girl named Marie (Cohen) falls asleep after a party at her home and dreams herself (or does she?) into a fantastic world where toys become larger than life. Her ...
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The colorful holiday classic is finally brought to the big screen, designed by famed children's story author and artist Maurice Sendak, and written for the first time to be as close as ... See full summary »
A cowardly boy who buries himself in accident statistics enters a library to escape a storm only to be transformed into an animated illustration by the Pagemaster. He has to work through obstacles from classic books to return to real life.
It is Christmas Eve, and the Stahlbaum family is happily unwrapping their Christmas gifts. After all the merriment, seven-year-old Marie receives a very special gift--a mysterious ... See full summary »
"WishKid" was a Saturday morning animated series created to play off the success of pre-teen movie star Macaulay Culkin (of Home Alone). Nick McClary owned a magic baseball glove which, if ... See full summary »
Paul De La Rosa
On Christmas Eve, a little girl named Marie (Cohen) falls asleep after a party at her home and dreams herself (or does she?) into a fantastic world where toys become larger than life. Her beloved Nutcracker (Culkin) comes to life and defends her from the Mouse King, then is turned into a Prince after Marie saves his life. Written by
This version of the ballet, an adaptation of the famous George Balanchine staging presented annually in New York City, is the only well-known American production of "The Nutcracker" to use children in the roles of Marie (known as Clara in most versions) and the Nutcracker/Prince, so the roles are not choreographed to be as technically demanding as in other productions of the ballet. The original 1892 Russian production also used children. Several other productions, including the recent Helgi Tomasson one for the San Francisco Ballet, have taken their cue from Balanchine and cast a little girl in the role of Clara, but in the Tomasson version, Clara is magically transformed into an adult in Act II so that she can dance the pas de deux with the Prince (danced in the Tomasson production by an adult). Many other productions (especially Russian ones) now cast adults as the Nutcracker/Prince and the girl, usually known as Clara rather than Marie, so that there is an adult love interest between the couple. See more »
In the opening credits, Macaulay Culkin is listed as playing Drosselmayer's nephew, but he is not listed as playing either The Nutcracker or The Prince. See more »
As far as I can recall, Balanchine's alterations to Tchaikovsky's score are as follows:
1) The final section of the Grossvatertanz (a traditional tune played at the end of a party) is repeated several times to give the children a last dance before their scene is over.
2) A violin solo, written for but eliminated from Tchaikovsky's score for The Sleeping Beauty, is interpolated between the end of the party scene and the beginning of the transformation scene. Balanchine chose this music because of its melodic relationship to the music for the growing Christmas tree that occurs shortly thereafter.
3) The solo for the Sugar Plum Fairy's cavalier is eliminated.
It seems to me the accusation that Balanchine has somehow desecrated Tchaikovsky's great score is misplaced.
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