Thursday, November 17, 2005

Nutcracker memories

Seemingly unending columns of large wooden crates line the halls of Crane, filled with costumes: beautiful dresses, colorful clown suits, whimsical fairy fashions, adorable reindeer outfits, ethereal angel robes, and on, and on. Wooden soldiers, toy dolls, Arabian garb, Chinese clothing, Snowflakes and Snow Queen... As a friend said, I wouldn't want to be the costume director for this show!

The stage is outfitted with rafter to floor backdrops depicting an elegant Victorian parlor replete with an enormous decorated Christmas tree, a grandfather clock, and rose colored and gilded furnishings. Beautifully wrapped gifts are apparent everywhere. This gives way to fanciful forests with falling snow and thrones. Snowflakes dance and Reindeer draw a full size white sleigh through the snowfall. Wonderful.

Six Saturday rehearsals caused my children and others to be successful in their performances. They were well prepared, therefore they did well. I like that. I appreciate that. They felt good about what they did, and well they should have. It was great! The angels glided across the stage simulating flight beautifully. And those tiny little reindeer prancing through the scene stole everyone's heart away! The clowns clowned with wonderful choreography and the party children were elegant indeed. These were the roles played by North Country children. What a marvelous opportunity!

The Albany Berkshire Ballet company presented excellent ballet - really wonderful. For those who never experienced live ballet, this convinced us all that it is beautiful indeed. And grueling. From Snow Queens, Cavaliers, and Sugar Plum Fairies to Toy Soldiers and Magic Mice the dancing was superb - they more than earn their money!

As for the music, the Crane Orchestra out did themselves! In all honesty, I was pleasantly surprised. They were very, very good! The Nutcracker is not easy music and I wasn't sure how they would do. I guess anyone who plays in an orchestra recognizes that performing this whole piece with a professional ballet company is a privilege. They really rose to the occasion.

At any rate, it was a marvelous way to open the holiday season for our family. The minute those sparkling melodies that we all recognize as Nutcracker tunes were played in that wonderfully familiar instrumentation - violins, flutes, celestes and all - it felt like Christmas! Nutcracker decorations given as gifts to participants will soon find a place on my mantel (I just learned this word can be spelled either way - mantle or mantel. Gotta love learning!)

But now it is done. Today will be a bit of a wash. Mom and three kids are exhausted. Checking the older girls math and English is on my list, as well as thank you cards made by the Nutcracker crew. But that may be it. The rest we will take as it comes!

Happy Holidays! (Said to the tune of the Sugar Plum whatever... you know... the one with with the flutes and all that...)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a fun, blessed, way to fill your days with your children! I love the Nutcracker, what an awesome experience!

7:47 AM  
Blogger Heather Dowling said...

Sounds like the performance was amazing! Sorry I missed it. Happy Holidays!

10:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The older boys (M,D, and C) and I had a wonderful time at the ballet. They all did a fabulous job! This is a memory that we will all cherish!

7:50 PM  
Blogger mony hussein said...

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7:36 AM  
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