Sunday, December 14, 2008

Nutcracker Ballet

This afternoon Evelyn and I saw a Nutcracker ballet performance put on by the Metropolitan Ballet Theatre. This is a dance studio that emphasizes authentic performances instead of recitals, and they put on two shows a year. I had looked into this ballet studio for Evelyn, but the creative movement class didn't work with Evelyn's preschool schedule.

Last year, Evelyn and I went to see the ballet in Fort Worth, where we had front-row seats. Evelyn could look into the orchestra pit to see the musicians playing their instruments, and you can't beat watching the ballet from the front row! This year's show was more low-key, but still good. Even though there wasn't an orchestra pit, the costumes were amazing. Oh, and you can't beat fake snow falling during Waltz of the Snowflakes!

To help prepare a three-year-old for the Nutcracker ballet (last year), I bought Evelyn a Nutcracker picture book by Susan Jeffers and a CD with the music. The book is perfect - fabulous illustrations and the story line is the basic Nutcracker tale. This year's ballet had some new characters and a few twists, but Evelyn still seemed to understand what was going on.

The most interesting part about attending the Nutcracker this year was how well Evelyn picked up on the dancers' specific poses and movements. Since she's been taking ballet for a year and a half, now, she knew quite a few of the positions and techniques. During intermission, Evelyn made up her own dance, consisting of passes, arabesques, and reverences.