December 17, 18, 19, 2021, The Long Beach Ballet will celebrate the 39th Anniversary of its annual production of The Nutcracker with five performances at the Terrace Theater located at the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center. Voted by Goldstar audiences in 2018 and 2019 as the “Best-beloved” production in the nation, The Long Beach Ballet is led by Artistic Director David Wilcox and his The Nutcracker will feature special guest performances and additional surprise treats for the entire family. Tickets are on sale now.
The Long Beach Ballet’s The Nutcracker has been seen throughout Southern California, Asia and on Television. Wilcox set the work on the Chinese Guangzhou Ballet, a classical ballet company located in Guangzhou, China that was established in 1974. Currently headed by Zhang Dandan, the Guangzhou Ballet tours internationally and is one of the top four ballet companies in China. Wilcox has also set the ballet classics La Bayadere and Cinderella on this stunning company.
“Crammed with special effects, the familiar Long Beach Ballet version of
‘The Nutcracker’ has nearly everything money can buy. For an opulent,
family-oriented, entertainment — seek no further.”
— Los Angeles Times
Always a favorite of every budding ballerina and ballerino, Wilcox has gone all out for this 39th production of his version of the classical tale The Nutcracker. “This production boasts a full symphony orchestra, a flying sleigh, a real live horse, on-stage pyrotechnics, and a cast of over 200. Former Disney designers Elliot Hessayon and Scott Schaffer created the enchanting scenery, Australian artist Adrian Clark designed the detailed costumes, and renowned magician Franz Harary created the special effects.” – Davidson & Choi Public Relations press release.
Los Angeles native David Wilcox began his professional career in Germany performing with the Berlin Ballet, the Nuremberg Ballet and the Heidelberg Ballet. In 1981, he co-founded the highly successful Long Beach Ballet which ran for 15 years. Wilcox also founded the Long Beach Ballet school which continues to this day as one of Southern California’s leading classical ballet institutions. The academy’s reputation is based on excellence, dedication and passion for the art. Students from this academy have gone on to join companies like San Francisco Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, and the Dresden Ballet.
Also a plus for any dance production, The Long Beach Ballet will perform The Nutcracker with a full symphony orchestra. The company is one of only two ballet companies in the country which includes two harps in its production in order to ensure the performance sounds exactly as Tchaikovsky envisioned.
“I like using the beauty of the classical art form of ballet, which has taken 500 years to develop to the level that it is today, to form a production that’s enticing and exciting. It has pyrotechnics, it has magic; it’s got everything I can think of to make it thrilling. This production is not just for people who like ballet. You can hate ballet and you’ll still like this production,” Wilcox said.
The role of Nutcracker Prince will be performed by Steven Morse, current soloist with the San Francisco Ballet, who began his ballet training at Long Beach Ballet.
Performances begin with a half-priced Preview Performance (full symphony) on Friday night, December 17th at 7:30 p.m. Show times are Saturday, December 18th at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm, and Sunday, December 19th at 1:00 pm and 6:00 pm at the Terrace Theater, Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center, located at 300 E Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90802.
WHAT: 39th Anniversary of Long Beach Ballet’s holiday classic “The Nutcracker”
WHEN: Friday, December 17 at 7:30 pm – Preview Performance (half price) – Saturday, December 18 at 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm – Sunday, December 19 at 1:00 pm and 6:00 pm.
WHERE: Terrace Theater, Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center, 300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90802
TICKETS: Prices range from $34.00 – $115.00. Tickets can be purchased at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center Main Box Office, and online through the Long Beach Nutcracker website. Family-friendly ticket prices range from $34.00 – $78.00 with a special VIP Package also available. Discounts are available for groups of 15 or more.
To read more about The Long Beach Ballet, its ballet academy and The Nutcracker, click HERE.
For more information about the Terrace Theater in Long Beach,click HERE.
Written by Jeff Slayton for LA Dance Chronicle.
Featured image: Long Beach Ballet’s The Nutcracker – Photo by Katie Ging courtesy of Long Beach Ballet.