The Nutcracker (2009) Poster

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1 ReviewOrdered By: Helpfulness
10/10
Magical
TheLittleSongbird5 September 2012
What a treasure. I may just prefer the 1989 and 1985 productions, but like those(as well as the 2001 Royal Ballet production) I can watch this Nutcracker over and over if I wanted to. The Nutcracker has always been one of my favourite ballets and stories, so I always expect a lot when it comes to seeing a production of it. Apart from Maurice Bejart's(which I found a self-indulgent near-disaster) every production of The Nutcracker has many reasons to watch it. On a visual front, there is little to fault this one. The start of the ballet does give a charming festive feel like it ought to, and the costumes and sets are traditional and very colourful. The dancing is very intimate in choreography and is very gracefully danced with emotion and commitment, especially in the Grand Pas-De-Deux. My favourite moment of the production though was during and after Dance of the Snowflakes. The dance itself was superbly choreographed, but the effect of the gliding across the stage heralding the crystal sleigh taking Clara and the Prince was a truly beautiful moment, and what Christmas and magic is all about. The video directing is generally very good, though I think in the transformation sequence there could have been more focus on what was going on on stage rather than showing the Christmas Tree grow and grow. The sound is fine. The orchestral playing is lush with the right amounts of compelling power too, while the conducting is always well-judged in tempo. Miyako Yoshida continues to be charming and elegant as the Sugar Plum Fairy, while Iohna Loots' Clara oozes touching vulnerability. Gary Avis is not one of the great Drosselmeyers but makes his mark, likewise with the Mouse King. The Prince and Nutcracker are as masculine and handsome as you'd expect, and Laura Morera's Rose Fairy and Laura McCulloch's Arabian Dancer are the standouts out of the dancers performing the little dances in the Land of Sweets. In conclusion, a magical production. 9.5/10 Bethany Cox
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