Ballet BC presents Alberta Ballet's
The Nutcracker

Dates and Venue 29 & 30 December 2010 at 7:30pm and 30, 31 December & 1 January at 2pm | The Queen Elizabeth Theatre

Reviewer Ed Farolan

This has been the best Nutracker performance I've seen since I saw the Moscow Ballet version years ago. When a dance company comes from the richest province of Canada, with a budget of $1.5 million, you'd expect high quality standards. What struck me the most was the set and costumes designed by Emmy Winner Zack Brown. They were simply fabulous.

Edmund Stripe's choreography was also very good for a performance of this calibre. Naturally, we won't expect a Baryshnikov or a Ledovskaya doing spectacular leaps, but opening night performance was near excellent. I was particularly impressed by Galien Johnston who played the role of Snow Tsarina. She was so delicate in her movements as though she were floating and dancing on a cloud!

Set at turn of 20th century Imperial Russia, The Nutcracker evokes an era of opulent grandeur which was precisely what this new production exuded. It was fresh and vibrant and the stunning set designs and elaborate costumes were marvelous.

With the capable Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Peter Dala, Tchaikovsky’s marvelous musical score flowed as the scores of children danced, and as the mice in the battle scene dressed as Cossack soldiers fought. Snowflakes falling appeared so real that one could imagine being in Russia (or Alberta), as the dancers inexorably displayed their flair.

This was indeed a holiday treat, and the opening night audience enjoyed the performance of these talented and capable dancers shouting bravos during curtain call.

© 2010 Ed Farolan