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Art&Seek Jr: Yuletide Dance Performances You Won’t Want To Miss
by Therese Powell 8 Dec 2015

Jump right into the yuletide season with one of these holiday ballets.

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Art&Seek Jr. is one mom‘s quest to find activities to end the seemingly endless chorus of the “I’m Bored Blues” while having fun herself.  Impossible you say? Check back on Tuesdays for kid-friendly events that are fun for adults, too.

My daughter just finished her science fair project last night. The burning question she decided to take on this year was this: “Does time really go faster as you get older?” She had a sample of 20 people of all different ages, conducted multiple time trials with each participant, and collected data galore which she then turned into colorful graphs. She typed, glued, and compiled and now the tri-fold poster board full of her findings is ready to go. Not to be critical of my brilliant girl-child’s scientific effort , but I think a better question would be: “Why does time go at warp-speed during the holidays?” You know what I mean. One minute you’re enjoying your turkey and trimmings at Thanksgiving dinner, and the next thing you know it’s Christmas Eve. Where did the time go?

Yep.”Time Flies” is the great understatement of the yuletide season. If you’re not careful all the seasonal performances can disappear faster than that leftover pumpkin pie. With that in mind, we’ve come of with a list of upcoming, family-friendly, holiday dance events you won’t want to miss.  

There's a Nutcracker Ballet for everyone this holiday season! Photo: The Festival Ballet of North Central Texas

There’s a Nutcracker Ballet for everyone this holiday season! Photo: The Festival Ballet of North Central Texas

When it comes to holiday favorites, ‘The Nutcracker’ is at the top of the list of can’t-miss Christmas-y productions. Lucky for you there are several upcoming performances of famous ballet in the North Texas area.

Skip the hustle and bustle of the holiday season and escape to the Kingdom of Sweets in Dallas Repertoire Ballet’s production of ‘The Nutcracker.’ The company is celebrating 23 years of presenting this family-friendly performance. It’s loaded with sparkling costumes, exciting choreography from floating snowflakes and fighting mice, and spectacular dancing from a cast of over 150, featuring students from the Academy of Dance Arts, the official school of Dallas Repertoire Ballet. You can see it this Sunday and next weekend at the Eisemann Center in Richardson.

Dancers from New York, Washington D.C. Europe, and 30 communities in the north central region of Texas make up Denton’s Festival Ballet of North Central Texas. The company is celebrating its 28th year and their production of ‘The Nutcracker‘ has become a holiday tradition in Denton. You can catch Festival Ballet’s magical performance of the classic ballet of Dec. 12 & 13 at the Margo Jones Performance Hall at TWU in Denton.

If you’re wanting to be dazzled in a big way, you’ll want to check out Texas Ballet Theater’s production of ‘The Nutcracker.’ From the big splashy sets to the glittery costumes, this production is elaborate and won’t disappoint. This ballet takes stage at Bass Performance Hall Dec. 11-27. Also worth noting, this is the only production of the famous ballet that you and the family can enjoy on Christmas Eve.

With all of the gatherings, present buying and general holiday hoopla you might be finding your funds a bit low. Well, fear not, Art Ballet Academy’s production of ‘The Nutcracker’ can take you to the magical land of the Sugarplum Fairy without straining your budget. At just $12 a ticket it’s one of the most affordable Nutcrackers around. There will be two performances on Dec. 19 at Mansfield ISD Center for the Performing Arts.

The Allen Civic Ballet’s annual presentation of ‘The Nutcracker Ballet’ will be extra this year special because it will feature a live musical accompaniment from the Allen Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra. You can follow Clara and her beloved Nutcracker Prince on their journey through the Kingdom of Sweets at the Performing Arts Center at Allen High School Sat. Dec 19 and Sun. Dec 20.

The Tuzar Ballet takes the stage at the Eisemann Center in Richardson for their production of ‘The Nutcracker.’ Joining the company for its 31th year performing the holiday classic are guest dancers Rie Ichikawa, a soloist with the Boston Ballet who will perform the parts of the Snow Queen and Sugar Plum Fairy; and Zack Grubbs, a Tuzer Ballet 1997 alumnus and soloist with the Cincinnati Ballet, who will perform as the Snow King and Cavalier. There are three performances of lavish and spectacular ballet Dec. 19-20.

Collin County Ballet Theatre’s ‘Nutcracker’ will be accompanied by the Plano Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Hector Guzman. International Guest Artist Adiarys Almieda will perform the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy with her husband Joseph Gatti as the Sugar Plum Cavalier. See it Dec. 22 and 23 at the Eisemann Center.

For those crave who crave something a little different  in their holiday dance, here are some alternatives:

If you’ve got tinies who might get restless during a full ballet, Avant Chamber Ballet‘s Holiday Celebration is the perfect solution. It’s actually two ballets on the same program. The show opens with ‘Sleigh Ride,’ a jazzy twist on your favorite Christmas carols performed by Bishop Arts Brass. And to close the night is ‘Nutcracker: Short and Suite.’ The aptly named one-act ballet is features all your favorite characters, costumes and live music in an abbreviated family-friendly length. Better act fast if you want to see this one, because it happens Thursday, Dec. 10 at Dallas City Performance Hall.

Contemporary Ballet Dallasputs a new spin on Dickens’ classic tale with Boogie Woogie Christmas Carol. The story has been revamped to the present day and told through classic and current swing and jazz music, including that of Harry Connick, Jr., Evanescence and Tommy Dorsey just to name a few. See it at SMU’s McFarlin Auditorium on Dec. 12.

Speaking of different, be sure to check out imPULSE Dance Project’s production of  Snow. You won’t find dancing sweets in this ballet, but it will definitely put you in a wintery state of mind. The not-so-traditional Christmas and holiday dance performance combines candlelight and modern dance to bring the snowy outdoors, indoors. See it Dec. 19 & 20 at Lewisville’s MCL Grand Theater.

There you go, plenty of choices, but not much time. Better get crackin’!

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