Nutcracker delights [photos]

It was not your grandmother’s Nutcracker onstage at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre Saturday

Minions? A hockey faceoff?

It was not your grandmother’s Nutcracker onstage at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre Saturday, Dec. 12 but Ballet Victoria’s take on the Christmas classic delivered everything that counted, and more to the big crowds.

Click on the image below to access a photo gallery

The Nutcracker 2015

BV’s artistic director Paul Destrooper appeared before the curtain to start the event and explained that he and the troupe had put their own spin on the famous story, calling it The Gift of the Nutcracker.

The major difference was that there was no nutcracker hero, but the audience, lost in the magic, hardly noticed.

We were served up all the famous music and a lot of the famous choreography from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite but Destrooper followed the example of the composer, who had wanted to please the children of his day.

Hence the inclusion of a hockey game played with candy canes instead of sticks and the insertion of yellow-shirted minions instead of Russian soldiers for the trepak dance.

But the company also knew there would be many traditionalists in the crowd, bringing their grand-daughters, clad in their best. And, sure enough, there was as much satin, lace and velvet in the audience as there was onstage.

All the beautiful dances were there, with costumes as swooningly romantic as any prospective princess could wish. For the adults, Destrooper included a delightful jazzy number, based on Dave Brubek’s song, Take Five.

The dancing ranged from graceful and sprightly to powerful and bringing a couple of the minions out into the lobby afterwards for photos with young fans was a master stroke.

But Ballet Victoria’s real gift to the audience was creating a fresh Nutcracker for a new century without losing that beloved connection to the past.

Just Posted

Proper support lacking for those with dyslexia, says Cowichan mom

October is International Dyslexia Awareness month

North Cowichan councillor’s proposal for regional control of forests gets nod at UBCM

Recommendation from North Cowichan councillor Rob Douglas now goes to province

Drivesmart column: Driving with obstructed vision

Fully 80 per cent of the information that we need to drive safely comes through our eyes.

Marked improvement for women’s rugby squad

Gudmundseth scores four as Cowichan edged by Westshore

Robert Barron column: Cell phone rules in cars are clear as mud

She was not actively using her cell at the time

VIDEO: Langley woman’s security camera records its own theft

Langley family discovers early morning grab was recorded

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

B.C. VIEWS: Wolf kill, not backcountry bans, saving caribou

B.C.’s largest herds turn the corner from extinction

Pearson nets shootout winner as Canucks clip Flyers 3-2

Vancouver picks up second straight home win

Map on Elections Canada website sends Nanaimo-Ladysmith voters to landfill

Address for polling station correct, but Google Map address differs

BC Children’s Hospital launches 2 new virtual care sites bringing total to 19 across province

Provincial initiative allows pediatric patients to see health specialists through video

‘Wham-bam out the door’: Surrey man’s front yard left ruined by scamming landscaper

Resident warns neighbours to be careful of door-to-door salesmen

Most Read