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The University of Wyoming Department of Theatre and Dance rings in the holiday season with the cherished family favorite, "The Nutcracker" Thursday through Sunday, Dec. 2-5.
This classic ballet fantasy is about a young girl, Clara, who receives a nutcracker for Christmas that spurs her fantastical dream. The play will run Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 2-4, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 5, at 2 p.m. in the UW Arts & Sciences auditorium.
Tickets cost $16 for the public, $13 for senior citizens and $8 for students. For tickets and information call (307) 766-6666 or go online at www.uwyo.edu/finearts.
Based on early 19th century German fairytale by E.T.A Hoffman and featuring Tchaikovsky's dazzling score, "The Nutcracker" brings out the child in each of us as it comes alive with dancing snowflakes, marching soldiers, the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Nutcracker Prince.
UW produces "The Nutcracker" every four years, a massive undertaking that involves many local children and community members. This year's production is choreographed by dance faculty Marsha Knight (Act I) and Jennifer Deckert (Act II).
Knight notes that UW's 2010 production resets the ballet in 1890s Laramie at the Ivinson Mansion with new scenic drops and Western-inspired costumes.
Through 2002, UW's "Nutcracker" was set in the typical romantic "Old World" that is so often the setting for the ballet. After that production wrapped, it became clear that many aging costumes and set pieces would have to be replaced.
Costume designer Lee Hodgson saw this as an opportunity to re-imagine the ballet and create a unique production for UW that would suit the spirit of Wyoming and the West. Clara soon became an "Ivinson" of Laramie rather than a "Strahlbaum" of Germany or Russia, with the setting, costumes and characters re-imagined as part of Laramie's Old West.
"Symbols of this early Laramie settlement - of cowboy rope, timber saw, railroad, the university, 'life' on First Street, and so on - are embedded in the designs," noted Knight. "We are presenting something very unique with this ballet. The beauty is in the details! So come and enjoy," she added.