Joffrey Ballet School Presents 'Not the Nutcracker' - Miller Theater at Columbia University
Hours: 3pm and 7pm
Price: $35; $15 children
2960 Broadway - 212-854-1633
Morningside Heights, NY 10027
Description: The Joffrey Ballet School of New York has chosen to celebrate the holiday season in a different way this year. The School's talented students are showcased in five works: "Scenes from Childhood," a new work that includes piano pieces by Robert Schumann, celebrates the joys of being young, innocent, and free. Thirteen short piano pieces are danced by the Levels 4 and 5 students. "La Vivandiere," a charming work first performed in 1848, with choreography by Arthur St.Leon to music by Cesare Pugni, forms an important link back to the Romantic Ballet of the 19th Century and the traditions of Classical Ballet. Highlights from "Kettentanz" has been one of the most enduring and popular works of the Joffrey Ballet repertory. First choreographed by the Joffrey Ballet School co-founder, Gerald Arpino in 1971, it comprises polkas, gallops and waltzes by Johann Strauss and J.S. Meyer in an unbroken chain of dances for six couples. It celebrates their virtuosity, expressiveness, and energy. This work will be performed by the School's Touring Group and staged by Nicole Duffy and Davis Robertson, both former members of the Joffrey Ballet. "The Teddy Bear Picnic" is a wide eyed, youthful romp into a fantasy of dancing teddy bears, twirling mushrooms, and high-jumping frogs. Under a large tree in the middle of a forest, bees will dance a minuet with their friends the flowers, a fox will partner lilting fairies, and children will waltz with their teddy bears. This ballet, created by director Jo Matos and choreographer David Fernandez, will remind us all that, in a child's imagination, the possibilities are endless. "Mack & Polly" is based on the famous "Threepenny Opera" by Kurt Weill and Bertholdt Brecht. Choreographed by Joffrey Ballet School's Artistic Director Robert Ray, it is an evocative and delightful story ballet about Mack the Knife, his many loves, including Polly Peacham, and his final betrayal by Jenny Diver. However, there is a "happy ending" just before Queen Victoria's Coronation. The jazz-inspired score by Kurt Weill is one of the masterpieces of 20th-century music. The program concludes with a "Grand Defile," which includes all students.