BARRE – The Green Mountain Nutcracker, Vermont’s only interpretation of the classic holiday tale with a local twist, returns to the Barre Opera House for two shows, on Saturday, Dec. 17, 7 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 18, 2 p.m.
Now in its sixteenth year, this one-of-a-kind production features an all-ages, 45-member cast of professional company dancers and local students of Moving Light Dance, all-original choreography by Christine Harris, Brandy Perez, Bridget Wheeler and Willow Wonder, set to both Tchaikovsky’s score and original music by Vermont musician, Colin McCaffrey, as well as an array of locally made sets and costumes.
Set in the 1970s in Vermont, this familiar-made-fantastical rendition of the classic ballet delights audiences with its many local references, from the boisterous loggers to the Maple Sugar Fairy.
“The Green Mountain Nutcracker really is a celebration of what it is to be living in Vermont: the snow, the leaves, the community, the culture, the stacking wood. It’s an exalting of those qualities. Vermonters are hardworking people; dancers are hardworking people, and there’s joy in hard work. I think you feel that in our ‘Nutcracker.’”
Moving Light Dance was founded by Christine Harris in 2000. One ballet class of 10 students held at the Plainfield Town Hall quickly grew into a popular school and company, now located in Montpelier, drawing hundreds of students and dancers from central Vermont and beyond.
The company present two staged professional productions each year with casts ranging in age from four to 60 something. Many of the students from the school, which includes classes in ballet, modern and contemporary dance, grow up performing in these productions. The opportunity for children to perform and collaborate with adults in community productions, versus simply learning technique and showcasing skills at recitals, is reflective of the school’s philosophy (and the character of Vermont) of inclusion, hard work, and collaboration. The school and company is regionally known for its signature mix of choreography and genres, interpretations of classic tales and ballets, and all-ages and -abilities casting.
To order tickets, visit barreoperahouse.org or call (802) 476-8188.