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The Nutcracker Ballet Review

The Nutcracker Ballet Review (translation from Polish)

Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker” at the “Palladium” theater at Złota street is one of the incest and most honestly performed ballet show staged recently at Warsaw stages. Usually, one writes about “an unforgettable evening”; this time, we are dealing with an unforgettable morning as the shows take place before noon and the complete audience is full of children (and their parents, obviously) mesmerized and often wordless and frozen in wonder.

Everyone watching the show is highly impressed by the splendid choreography at the same time full of lyricism and humor, admires the energy of the dancers and parts of dance steps full of human dimension. “The Nutcracker” is a beautiful ballet, known from the biggest stages of the world. Here, during an hour-long version, shortened for the purposes of perception capacities of the young audience, we can see both the experienced, although still young, soloists (applause for the contortionist) as well as children only a couple of years old – students of a ballet school, performing their parts with great emotion and touching responsibility (but also with great charm!). This combination makes a very good impression – we are charmed, even moved! The star of the show is undoubtedly the soloist performing the part of the eponymous hero, the Nutcracker, whose energy and dance simply makes the not-so-big hall of the “Palladium” theater explode.

As a matter of fact, there are no simply proper or stilted roles, everyone has a lot to give and they are doing it with ease and therefore create such a suggestive atmosphere that even adults forget about their age and they travel in time and in space along with their children – into the world of fairy tales, the world of their own childhood. The show is therefore mesmerizing for everyone, regardless of age, and the emotions described have an almost thrilling effect on the audience.
Introduction to the ballet of the character of the Wizard – illusionist who easily and directly enters in contact with the young audience is a good idea; it is a funny interlude, not only in terms of magic tricks, but also verbally, which is essential in case of ballet which lacks words and is therefore hard to comprehend for children, to keep up the necessary tension in the hall among the young audience. However, the children show no signs of being bored even during the longer scenes with dance and music. The Wizard introduces the young members of the audience to a fairy tale dimension, full of different experiences and multilayer feelings which constitute the content of the ballet action. Moreover, he treats the children seriously, he is cheeky, not childish. The classical “setting” of the show is also worth some attention, meaning the clothes and the stage design, which are modest but do not bring discredit on the greatest productions of “The Nutcracker”.

It is a good and useful show, it teaches how to be sensitive and patient in the reception of art. The music of the XIX century, Tchaikovsky’s music, is beautiful and understandable for us adults. For children who are 4-6 years old it is however hard, dramatic, at times scary. Nevertheless, the visual side of the show perfectly bridges the gap in reception of the music by such a young audience. The language of Tchaikovsky’s music greatly defends itself here and is understood by such young viewers. A couple of times I forgot where I was and how old I was, at moments I went back to my childhood years and, while daydreaming, I remembered the whole atmosphere and feelings when I myself would go with my parents to see similar shows many years ago. I even felt a short pain in my chest, yes, it’s true! It is also important for the audience to be able to go on the stage or to meet the artists in person. Thanks to this, a much needed bond between the audience and the artists is created; it will certainly pay off in the future. Are there any drawbacks of this staging? Indeed, there is one, but it cannot be held against the organizers – there is no live orchestra in the theater and the music is played from CDs. However, the audience is so impressed that this remains unnoticed. Nevertheless, this drawback pays off – in the price of the tickets. Still, the popularizing, educational and spiritual function of the show fully compensates for all the drawbacks, and even more than that.

Tomasz Lerski

The Nutcracker – Review

Review of “The Nutcracker” Ballet Show

”The Nutcracker” ballet is a real classic, and the show produced by Ballet for Children is a proof that it can be given a form which is both interesting and agreeable for everyone!

Peter Tchaikovsky’s music used in the show is as beautiful as always, and the stage design and props help the audience feel the magical Christmas spirit. From the very beginning, very adequate costumes catch the attention of the audience. I think that the costumes of Christmas sweets, of the Nutcracker and the mice with red eyes are the best. The choreography is particularly interesting thanks to elements of different dance styles, not only ballet.

The show also contains many humoristic elements, starting from the words of Drosselmayer, the wizard, and his attempts to perform magic tricks with the help of the audience, through dance elements, to the costumes. Even though I am not one of the youngest spectators, I have to admit it is simply impossible not to laugh while watching the show, regardless of one’s age.

The only weak point of the show is the fact that it is maybe too short, but we have to bear in mind that the attention span of the youngest members of the audience is much sorter that the one of adults. I strongly recommend it to everyone, to adults and to children. It is an universal show!

© Ola

Information for organizers: Ballet for Children – Maciej Wilk

Dear All,

BaletdDadDzieci.com and facebook.com/BaletDlaDzieci websites are not the official websites of ballet shows directed and choreographed by Anna Wujkowska (Cinderella, the Most Beautiful Ballet Fairy Tales, Princess Scheherazade and the Pirates, Swan Lake and the Nutcracker) presented at the Palladium Theater (Teatr Palladium).

Mr Maciej Wilk has nothing to do with the shows currently produced by Ballet for Children (Balet dla Dzieci): Little Joys (Małe Szczęścia), Swan Lake, Cinderella, the Snow White, Scheherazade and others, and has no right to represent them or to make any binding arrangements.

If you are interested in cooperating with us, please do not hesitate to contact us at: Paweł Bosky BoskyTeatr@gmail.com
Teatr Tańca “w Ruchu” (Theater of Dance “in Motion”)

Joanna Lichorowicz – a choreographer, a director and a dancer

JOANNA LICHOROWICZ

Swoją przygodę z tańcem rozpoczęła w wieku lat 6 w Studiu Baletowym przy Operze Krakowskiej. Edukację kontynuowała w Krakowskiej Akademii Tańca „L’art de la Danse”, będąc również członkiem szkolnego zespołu baletowego. Po pomyślnie przebytych audycjach została przyjęta do Laban School w Londynie i Rotterdamse Dansacademie – Codarts w Rotterdamie. W Holandii, rozpoczęła czteroletnią edukację obfitą we współpracę z wieloma pedagogami i choreografami z całego świata. W 2008 roku ukończyła studia, otrzymując dyplom dokumentujący jej wyższe wykształcenie w dziedzinie tańca. Następnie przez dwa sezony związana była z Państwową Operą Bałtycką jako solistka Bałtyckiego Teatru Tańca. Obecnie prowadzi warsztaty taneczne i opracowuje choreografie do projektów organizowanych przez Bosky Teatr.

The History of Ballet

We cannot talk about the history of ballet without referring to dance, as ballet is one of the forms of dance. The origins of this particular dance form can be found at the Italian courts, particularly in the lavish court pageantry involving music, dance and feasting, as late back as the 15th and the 16th century. The art of the early ballet was introduced in France by Catherine de Medicis and it was later shaped by the French court ballet (ballet de cour).

The first professional theatrical ballet company, the Paris Opera Ballet, was created in the late 17th century as a part of the Royal Academy of Dance founded by Louis XIV, a French monarch passionate about dance. The importance of the French influence on the development of this art can still be seen due to the fact that French words are used so often in the ballet vocabulary. Examples of words dating back to that time are cabriole or pirouette. Theatrical ballet evolved into a form independent from the opera. From the French court, the influences would spread to other European courts, the aristocrats being the main ballet art audiences. Italy remained an important source of influences as well.

In the 18th century, thanks to advancements in technical standards and reforms made to ballet, this art became a serious dramatic art form. In Russia, the Imperial Ballet of St. Petersburg was founded.

The 19th century saw the ballerina become the most popular dance performer of the continent and a notable change in the society was observed as aristocratic sensibilities became less and less important. The Romantic movement marked the shape of ballet, which became dominated by female dancers, and the century witnessed the creation of many new important European professional ballet companies which still exist today, such as the Kiev Ballet or the Vienna State Ballet. The Russian ballet played an important role. In the 19th century, ballet also spread across the Americas and the classical tutu (the typical ballet skirt) worn by female dancers appeared. Earlier, it had been hard for women to dance due to the weight of the costumes.

In the 20th century, the ballet styles continued to develop and the art became even more popular around the world. At the beginning of the century, the Russian ballet moved back to France, where the Ballets Russes created by Sergei Diaghilev were of particular influence. Michel Fokine was another important figure of that time. He settled in New York after being influential in Paris. American ballet was also immensely influenced by George Balanchine thanks to whom, in terms of developments, the century saw what is called the neoclassical ballet, a style of ballet which expanded the classical form and which was a sort of a response to romanticism and to modernity. Many new companies were formed all around the world including, among others, the San Francisco Ballet and the National Ballet of Canada. What is interesting is that in Great Britain, a country with a very long history of ballet performances, ballet started being taught and developed only in 1920, the year in which the Association of Operatic Dancing was established.

The most recent developments in the field of ballet include the multi-faceted contemporary ballet and post-structural ballet. As of today, the ballet repertoire offers a great variety to wide audiences.

Ballet – The Meaning of the Word

The different meanings of the word ballet with explanations and examples.

The meaning of the word ballet

The word ballet has a number of different meanings linked to each other:

  • a type of a theater show in which the main means of expression is dance performed to music, by dancers in accordance to a choreography, with decorations visible in the background;
  • a ballet group (examples: the group of dancers of the Theater of Dance in Motion, of Ballet for Children, or of the ballet of the Grand Theater (Teatr Wielki) in Warsaw, at present the Polish National Ballet);
  • a musical piece written especially for a ballet show;
  • the whole of the ballet art of a given time or a given country (examples: the romantic ballet, the Polish ballet).

Etymology:

Originally, the word ballet comes from Greek, from “βαλλίζω” (ballizo),which was borrowed into Latin as ballo, ballare, which then appeared in Italian as balletto. From Latin, the word came into the French language as ballet, which was then borrowed into English in the seventeenth century.

source: Wikipedia

Ballet for Children – The Meaning of the Word ‘Ballet’

Different meanings of the word ballet with explanations and examples.

The meaning of the word ballet

The word ballet has a number of different meanings linked to each other:

  • a type of a theater show in which the main means of expression is dance performed to music by dancers in accordance to a choreography, with decorations visible in the background;
  • a ballet group (examples: the group of dancers of the Theater of Dance in Motion, of Ballet for Children, or of the ballet of the Grand Theater (Teatr Wielki) in Warsaw, at present the Polish National Ballet);
  • a musical piece written especially for a ballet show;
  • the whole of the ballet art of a given time or a given country (examples: the romantic ballet, the Polish ballet).

Etymology:

Originally, the word ballet comes from Greek, from “βαλλίζω” (ballizo),which was borrowed into Latin as ballo, ballare, which then appeared in Italian as balletto. From Latin, the word came into the French language as ballet, which was then borrowed into English in the seventeenth century.

source: Wikipedia

Scheherazade Ballet Show – Reviews

“Scheherazade” Ballet for Children Review (translation from Polish)

Source: Zbigniew Kowalewski http://www.ksiazeizebrak.pl/node/1335#comment-5430

At the Ateneum theater (Teatr Ateneum), the young audience had the opportunity to meet their favorite characters from fairy tales and fables which had been written down in a large book. The book belonged to a princess, beautiful as well as wise. “Scheherazade”– the name also represents the title of a collection of fairy tales narrated by the princess herself, who tells stories from different parts of the world. It is no wonder that on a June evening, the Ateneum theater stage was full of fairy tale characters, the ones from fables as well as the ones remembered by children from films such as “The Pirates of the Caribbean”, (…) the fun and the amusement were amazing.

Scheherazade reigned on the stage with the large book with fairy tales which, in a short time, went missing because of Ali Baba and the forty thieves. The book got shamelessly stolen! In this manner, the young audience was introduced to a convention of a theater festivity in which a classic fairy tale becomes an excuse for great theater fun including music, dance and singing.

The Ateneum theater was attended by entire families accompanying little children, but teenagers appeared at the theater as well. The age span of the audience was therefore big, but who doesn’t like fairy tales and fables? The Children’s Day is not the only occasion to present such impressive shows as “Scheherazade”. This major costume show became a wonderful excuse to introduce young persons to the mysterious atmosphere of theater and to bring them closer to its magic. It is not excluded that among the audience were future directors and actors who will be applauded by their peers. In this original manner, the Ateneum theater takes care of its future audience and new personnel. Nowadays, it is necessary to foresee in advance, to plan and to maintain the intergenerational bond between all the participants of cultural life. This bond ties people strongly to one another, more than any other discipline, as it is based on emotions, traditions and enormous heritage of knowledge. We acquire it while listening to our grandma or our aged grandfather reading fables by the fireplace. We strengthen it later while reading books and seeing stage adaptations of literary works.

To continue reading (in Polish), go to: http://www.ksiazeizebrak.pl/node/1335#comment-5430

Scheherezade ballet review

The Nutcracker Ballet Show – Reviews

”The Nutcracker” Show (a ballet for children review translated from Polish)

Ballet for Children’s ”The Nutcracker” show is a shortened version of the classical ballet by Peter Tchaikovsky with the same name – it lasts about an hour. It is performed on the big stage of the Palladium Theater with the decorations and choreography typical for a classical ballet show. The exception: music is played from loudspeakers. The libretto modified to suit the needs of children is in line with the Christmas spirit. The younger audience is introduced into the fairy tale world by a Wizard. The dancers are children, young students of a ballet school (mostly girls), and adult dancers. For a grown-up viewer, it is amazing to be able to compare the uncertain steps of serious, nervous girls of only a couple of years of age with the laid-back grace of the ballerinas next to whom probably everyone feels as clumsy as an elephant. And as for the children?…

As for the children, everything happens for them in a real and a strong way and is remembered for a long time. They sit with their eyes fixed on the stage, where, at an arm’s length, there are characters known from fairy tales that have been read and seen. Sometimes I cannot stop myself from shouting out spontaneously – “I get instantly hungry!” when I see the cookie characters and the ecstatic colors. After the show, the children get on the stage and try to dance themselves, they collect the snowflakes; a meeting with the fairy tale characters is also organized off the stage.

Reportedly, the choreographer of the show, when she was a little girl, decided to become a dancer after having watched a ballet show on TV. Us adults, we can tell reality from fiction. The children perceive the world in a different way, and the fairy tale world of ballet is particularly fascinating for them.

after all, ballet is magic (in the positive meaning of the word ;-) )

© ovana

Nutcracker ballet review