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Joffrey Ballet School's new production of The Nutcracker

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December 18-20 (Friday at 7 PM; Saturday at 2 PM & 7 PM; Sunday at 2 PM)

Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, 566 LaGuardia Place

Tickets: $28-$58; special student tickets for $12

Reservations: 212-352-3101 online at www.skirballcenter.nyu.edu

or at the Joffrey School, 212-254-8520

THE JOFFREY BALLET SCHOOL returns to the Skirball Performing Arts Center, December 18-20, for four performances of its elegant new production of Tchaikovsky's

THE NUTCRACKER, choreographed by Davis Robertson, Associate Artistic Director of the School, after the original production by Petipa and Ivanov. All roles will be danced by students of the Joffrey Ballet School, and Bolshoi-trained teacher at the School, Dmitry will appear as Herr Drosselmeyer.

Davis Robertson, a former principal dancer with the Joffrey Ballet, has created works for that company, as well as for the Milwaukee Ballet and Mikhail Baryshnikov. His new Nutcracker follows the traditional production, with a Victorian-style holiday party for Clara and family, into the Snow Scene and the Kingdom of Sweets. The character dances will stress authentic folk elements; Waltz of the Flowers has choreography by Cameron Basden, a longtime Joffrey dancer/ballet mistress, currently on the faculty of the Joffrey Ballet School. In Robertson's telling of the famous story, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffmann, Herr Drosselmeyer plays a central role - he accompanies Clara throughout her journey and is the orchestrator of her fantasy. He surrounds her with familiar faces: the Snow King and Queen are danced by Clara's parents; one of Clara's cousins, also seen at the party, turns into the Nutcracker Prince.

The Joffrey Ballet School was founded in 1952 by Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino, and is located at Sixth Avenue and 9th Street in Greenwich Village. Now under the direction of George de la Pena, the training program has produced dancers who are technically and artistically accomplished, and who have successful careers with companies around the world, including the Joffrey Ballet in Chicago.

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