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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Nutcracker casting


NikkisMamma

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Just for fun! I thought it would be nice to see what everyone's dk got cast as... If they are happy, disappointed, what your production does differently or the same year after year, that sort of thing.

Our ad likes to switch things up so that the parts are generally not the same year after year, although there are some that are quite similar.... Sometimes the parts are completely different than what the dancers thought when they saw the casting!

This year my dd got cast as the exact same two parts she had last year. Judging from the rest of the children cast, there will be differences to the parts. Last year, she was the only one of her level cast as part A, to be a role model for the somewhat younger or less experienced dancers and this year several of her same age/level peers are also cast as part A, along with some younger girls. In part B, last year this was only girls of her level and above, she was the smallest one, this year it seems she has been cast again as "role model" because all the others are younger/less experienced and she will be among the taller ones in this same part. She is quite petite and has been cast in this "role model" capacity for the past 3years now. She likes it but also sometimes wishes she would be cast exactly as her friends who are for the most part taller.... But all in all, she's very excited about her parts because even though she has performed them before its parts she really enjoys. She's happy, which makes me happy! :)

Oh, she's an ice fairy in the snow scene and a polichinelle. 3rd time performing both parts.

I can't wait for the rehearsals to start, it's so exciting to see what the ad does with all the parts every year!

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My DD12 was initially very disappointed with her casting of Spanish Corps & Rat, she really wanted Thai so she could perform in pointe shoes (Spanish wear character shoes). She has performed every last one of the child roles, a couple of them twice, and this is her first grown-up divertissement role. She even posted on facebook she was crying in her room (so dramatic) I reminded her that she will be allowed to warmup on stage with the professionals, have a dressing room in the adult area, and dance in the finale, then she talked to a few of her dancer friends and she's all good.

 

She had a very specific and ambitious goal this year and ballet mistress and AD told her she delivered an awesome audition, she just doesn't understand the casting decision when it might be about nothing more than her being too short to fit the costume. Or the fact that she looks very Spanish. Who knows?

 

There is always next year...when she will probably be initially disappointed if she is cast as Thai rather than a snowflake/flower.

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is Thai the same as what i've always know as Arabian? I think its interesting to read about different studios or companies take on this ballet. Last year Ovation tv aired a different nutcracker each week for probably 8-10 weeks all by different companies. It was a really fun program. Our Arabian is a very contemporary piece usually done barefoot - and a solo. My dd is also hoping for that one.

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aww dang!! Sorry - can we move this to cross talk so parents of older dancers can be in on it too??

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I've never heard of Thai either, but we are pretty new to ballet and nutcracker. This will be dds first! She got her most wanted role, Arabian, and the boy doll soldier mechanical thing, and then a rat, flowers and snow.Maybe something else I forgot too, lol. So, a whole lot of roles and costumes to manage!

 

She is a bit worried snow will be too hard and too long and she will forget, but I think she will be fine. I am surprised she got Arabian, I have in my mind it's a mature role and DD is young and looks pretty young, but I think its heavy on flexibility and that's definitely her thing. And she is so, so happy!

 

Last Year she was to have done Chinese, but got injured (not dance related) and couldn't. She wasn't real broken up, the role was all tumbling and contortion and she wanted to dance! So she got her wish- a whole lot of nutcracker dancing!

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Our studio does a non-traditional Nutcracker--the first act is contemporary in setting and dance, with the usual classical music. It sounds strange but we have a wonderful jazz/tap/contemporary choreographer and she has put together something pretty great. So my dd (12) is both a jazz-dancing maid and a tapping toy soldier, as well as the traditional classical Snow and (her big thrill) the Marzipan shepherdess. My baby dd (8) is a rag doll (first act) and then a mouse and a snow flurry. They will both be very busy!

 

My older dd is especially excited because this is her first Nutcracker dancing on pointe.

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Lady Elle our company calls it Thai, others call it Chinese, Siamese, or Tea. Our version doesn't have tumbling or contortions but it is usually the first pointe role the girls get, and there are only 3 of them so it's pretty competitive.

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My kids were extremely happy - rosebud and party girl. Both parts get a lot of stage time. The one who got party girl, she had danced, switched to gymnastics, then back to dance after a couple of years. This is her first ballet part, having done gingers (tumbling part) for two years. This age is so much more appreciative of their roles than the older crowd it seems to me. There was much angst and nashing of teeth on twitter over parts they did or didn't get. Such unnecessary drama.... :nopity:

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I love hearing about how different each nutcracker is!

Dd and I love watching the battle of the nutcrackers on ovation and have our favorite performances dvdrd so we can watch them whenever we want.

Threegirlpileup, that sounds like a lot of fun actually, I would love to see a production like that! I love the classical take on it too, but for variety, a more modern one would be fun.

It fascinates me how the different parts are perceived, and which ones are "traditionally" pointe parts. In our production, snow and flowers are always en pointe but lots of the others vary. Sometimes Chinese, Spanish and marzipan are but just as often they're not. That's part of why it cracks me up so much to see the kids reactions to their parts when casting goes up, because truly, the part may be completely different from the same part last year or the year before. Sometimes Russian is a complicated dance part, sometimes it's very basic and practically just "living props", sometimes Spanish is simply posing behind the principal, sometimes it's an elaborate corps choreography.... You just never know from one year to another! Our ad is really good at making things different and working with the different groups and skill levels she has at any given year. There are always parts that kids seem more excited about than others, but sometimes they surprise me and are super excited about parts that seem less than thrilling to me, but everyone has their favorites.

 

Merde to everyone, have a blast rehearsing and performing this season! I can't wait for rehearsals to start!

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  • 2 weeks later...

We are still waiting to hear. I often wonder how she does it, but every year our AD gets it out and the show is wonderful. The AD is still deciding whether to do the Texas Nutcracker or the traditional. The Texas one has cowboys and jack-a-lopes. It's pretty fun. My oldest dd is in the company so will at least dance in the snow scene and battle. My middle dd will most likely dance in the battle scene while my youngest will most likely be in the Russian dance. These are the traditional roles for their levels.

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My DD found out her casting last week.....Aditional Party Girl, Gumdrop (first tutu!) and Russian.

She is thrilled :-)

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DD is a doll this year. We are attached to a professional company, so most of the roles go to the company dancers. We got one of the few Children's roles that is in both the first and second acts!

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Unexpected surprise at our house - DD was cast as Clara! She's one of two who alternate performances. We're all super excited.

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Party Girl at a new Nutcracker venue this year as our home studio does not offer a winter production. We finally found a winter production studio that accepts that my daughter is legally blind in both eyes and may need to wear glasses on stage (she is just learning how to use performance lenses, so the whole issue might be going away... but I am hesitant to let people who were not supportive of her last year teach her now). Now she will need to re-establish herself as a reliable dancer at the new place, and hopefully grow in her casting in the new Nutcracker home, just as she did at the previous location.

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