“The Nutcracker” still a favorite


| ckasden@queenscourier.com |

Despite a whirling snowstorm and below freezing temperatures, a large crowd attended the Brighton Ballet Theater (BBT) performance of “The Nutcracker” at Colden Auditorium in the Kupferberg Center. Dozens of performers, many of them talented children, danced with confidence and grace. They were dressed as everything from mice to snowmen, music box dolls to soldiers, doing justice to Tchaikovsky’s brilliant score.
The children strode onstage providing elegant interpretations of every vignette. This included the African, Spanish, Indian, Russian, Chinese and French musical sequences. Others appeared as snowflakes and fairies. Soloists at both the professional and student levels provided graceful leadership.
The toymaker/magician Dr. Drosselmeier bowed to the audience before the curtains rose. He delighted the children with his sleight of hand. The powerful Mouse King also kept the children energized. Of course, the Princess and her handsome Prince were a regal centerpiece for the afternoon’s production. The entire “Nutcracker” ballet was condensed into a little over an hour. Just right for the littlest admirers in the audience and perfect for driving home cautiously under blizzard conditions.
The Brighton Ballet Theater is a premier troupe that has appeared in major venues since its creation more than 25 years ago. Once again they dazzled the audience with brilliant choreography (Edouard Kouchnarev), bright and beautiful costume design (Victor Matsenin, Valeriy Tsymbal, Irina Roizin), breathtaking scenic design (Charles H. Stewart & Co., Edouard Kouchnarev), and musical consultation by Rosalia Germash, all under the executive direction of Irina Roizin
Magnificent costumes, immortal music by Tchaikovsky and graceful ballet have kept “The Nutcracker” on the must-see list every winter in Queens. There are at least three versions on the main stages this season, including Flushing Town Hall (718-463-7700), Queens Theatre in the Park (718-760-0064) and the Kupferberg Center at Queens College, located at 65-30 Kissena Boulevard in Flushing. As always, save me a seat on the aisle.