Goh Ballet continues its “Nutcracker” holiday tradition

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      When I was a young girl taking ballet lessons in Richmond, there was one thing that we all saw as the pinnacle of holiday success: being cast in Goh Ballet’s rendition of The Nutcracker.

      I never auditioned myself (the fear of rejection too great for my thin skin), but many of my fellow dancers did. I distinctly recall that one year my friend Emily Chessa—who I had a drink with recently, and who currently graces our stages with Ballet BC—was cast as a mouse. Or was it a rat? One of the rodents, nevertheless. We knew even back then she was destined for greatness.

      Anyway, The Nutcracker has been a tradition of the Goh for many years, marking it both a chance for budding ballerinas to perform in a production other than their year-end recitals, and for audiences to be enchanted by the enduring magic of this whimsical story.

      Aside from the homegrown talent, this year’s production will also feature dancers from the Royal Danish Ballet, the National Ballet of China, and the Pacific Northwest Ballet. Expect sparkly costumes, lavish sets, and enveloping live music from the Vancouver Opera Orchestra.

      In some interesting moves for inclusivity, the Nutcracker Prince—traditionally played by a white male—is this year given to Brazilian dancer Vitor Moreira; meanwhile, the typical sister-brother duo of Clara and Fritz is instead being played by two girls. This flexibility in casting allows for the best possible dancer to play each role, regardless of gender or race. Now that is something to give a standing ovation for.

      Photo by David Cooper.

      Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker

      December 14 to 17

      Where: Queen Elizabeth Theatre

      Tickets: Available online