Dance To EvOLvE Blog

Nutcracker: A Holiday Activity For Kids

Posted by Brittany White on Dec 22, 2016 8:00:00 AM

holidays_christmas_costumes1.jpgThe holiday season is here once again! Ahh, I sure have missed this wonderful time of the year with steaming hot cups of cocoa, warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, and all-around jolly holiday cheers. I’m sure all of you have missed this magical time spent with loved ones just as much as I have. With the holiday season, an amazing opportunity for some holiday activities for kids and the whole family also arrives.

The perfect music to accompany this post would have to be the sound of sugar plums quietly dancing in the background. You can probably guess exactly which song I’m talking about! Use your imagination and hear the music in your head to give this post some extra emphasis! Did you guess what it is? If you were thinking of the Nutcracker story, then you guessed correctly!

The watching the classic ballet performance that goes hand-in-hand with the song is a perfect holiday activity for kids and the whole family.  In this holiday season, anyone can find a Nutcracker performance in his or her local dance studios not too far away.

The Nutcracker embraces the spirit of the holiday season and is an enjoyable holiday activity for kids! The whole family (even dads!) can enjoy it and also dancers can identify some of the moves they learned from our dance classes!

The Nutcracker has it all with an enchanting story of a little girl in a magical world with a Nutcracker, King Mouse, and dancing sugar plums. The scenery backdrops, costumes and dancing are absolutely gorgeous, and the music will simply take you away. (Plus, you’ll be able to recognize a
lot of these songs from your holiday shopping).

holidays_christmas_costumes.jpgTo give you a brief history: The first version of the Nutcracker called The Nutcracker and The Mouse King premiered on December 18, 1892 in St. Petersburgh to limited popularity. However, the score within the ballet by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was the huge success that brought us the classic song "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy." As the years progressed, the ballet really became famous when the world-renowned choreographer George Balachine choreographed a new version in 1954. If you have ever seen the Nutcracker it was most likely based off the choreography in Balachine’s production. The Nutcracker is one of the most famous ballets in present time and is a great holiday activity for kids and the whole family  that should not be missed during the holiday season.

In terms of showings, a professional company performing the Nutcracker will leave you breathless and in awe; however, it will come with a more expensive ticket. If you, like many of us, are looking for something a little more budget friendly, many local dance studios do versions of the show. For example, I have seen the San Diego Youth Ballet’s version of the Nutcracker for $15-$20, and thought it was wonderful. At the end of the day, no matter what price you pay, you can’t help but leave the show with holiday nostalgia after hearing familiar classical music, seeing children in adorable costumes, and getting impressed by the leading dance soloists.

Here are a couple professional companies offering the Nutcracker this year in the San Diego area:

City Ballet of San Diego

San Diego Civic Youth Ballet

California Ballet

Moscow Ballet

West Coast Ballet Theatre

Nutcracker this year in Chicago area with pricing details

Keep Dancing Over The Holidays!

Tags: Holiday Dance Performances, dance recital, dance performance

Preparing For Your Child's Dance Recital

Posted by Brittany, Dance To EvOLvE on Jan 10, 2014 10:31:00 AM

dance recitalIt's never too early to start thinking about recital! Participating in a recital is the perfect way for your child to celebrate their hard work throughout the year in dance class, and it is a wonderful way to create lifelong memories with your family!

While dance recitals are a ton of fun, many parents worry that a large performance may be stressful (especially parents with first-time dancers). While recital is a busy time, it is also a fun time, an experience that should be enjoyed by parents and dancers alike! To help make sure that your recital experience is the very best that it can be, we've compiled several helpful tips to help get you and your dancer prepared, ensuring the big day will be as much fun and stress-free as possible! 

Practice Make Perfect!dance recital, practice

The importance of practice is simple: as with any skill, the more often you practice something, the better you will get! Think of any top athlete...how often do you think they practice? Olympians often train 4-8 hours per day depending on their sport. NFL players work practice for about 4 days a week, 5 hours at a time, and that doesn’t include general workouts. In preparation for their Christmas show, the world-famous Rockettes practice 8 hours a day, 6 days per week. As you can see, reaching your full potential in any area takes time and commitment.  It is important to attend all weekly dance classes and scheduled rehearsals, and communicate with your teacher if you need to be absent.

Dance Recital preparation is the perfect time to develop a practice schedule for your dancer at home. By practicing your dancer's recital routine at home several times a week, he/she will become comfortable with the choreography. Ask your dance teacher for the name of the routine song and see if there is a video of the choreography available for practicing with at home. Once your dancer is confident with the routine, he/she will be full of excitement for the opportunity to show off on stage!

dance recitalDay-Of Helpful Hints:

• Make sure you pack snacks and things to do backstage (snacks should not be messy…you wouldn’t want anything to spill on a costume!)  Most dance studios will tell you what to bring and not to bring.

• Lay out your costume the night before to ensure you have all the pieces (head pieces, tights, shoes, etc.)

• Do a trial run with hair and make-up so both you and your child know what to expect so there is no extra stress on show day (make-up is typically new to young dancers and can take a bit of getting used to!)

• Pack extra hair elastics, bobby pins, safety pins, clear nail polish (for runs in tights) and hairspray

• Label all your costumes and accessories to make sure that things don’t get mixed up

• Make sure you pack your camera to capture the magical moments!  (Although check your dance studio's photography policy as most do not allow photography during the show for safety reasons.  But take pictures before and after til your heart's content!)

Once you and your dancer feel prepared for the dance recital, the fun really begins. On the big day, your dancer will get to put on his/her most beautiful smile, and as a parent, you can sit back and enjoy the show!

Download A FREE  Parent Guide To  Choosing The Best  Dance Class For  Your Child

Tags: Dance Classes, performance, dance recital

Nutcracker: A Holiday Activity For Kids

Posted by Brittany White on Nov 2, 2013 2:00:00 PM

holidayactivityforkidsThe holiday season is here once again! Ahh…I sure have missed this wonderful time of the year, with the steaming hot cups of cocoa, the warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, and the all-around jolly holiday cheer. I’m sure all of you have missed this magical time spent with loved ones just as much as I have. With the holiday season comes the amazing opportunity for some holiday activities for kids and the whole family.

The perfect music to accompany this post would have to be the sound of sugar plums quietly dancing in the background. You can probably guess exactly which song I’m talking about... so use your imagination and hear the music in your head to give this post some extra emphasis. ;) Did you guess right? If you were thinking of the Nutcracker story, then you are correct! This classic ballet is a a perfect holiday activity for kids and the whole family.  In this holiday season, anyone can find a Nutcracker performance in dance studios not too far away either on a professional or amateur level. 

Either way, the Nutcracker embraces the spirit of the holiday season. It is an enjoyable holiday activity for kids and the whole family (even dads!) and is truly the perfect show for a dancer to see for his/her first ballet. Maybe they can even identify some of the moves that they learned from our dance classes!

The Nutcracker has it all with an enchanting story of a little girl in a magical world with a Nutcracker, King Mouse, and dancing sugar plums. The scenery backdrops, costumes and dancing are absolutely gorgeous, and the music will simply take you away. (Plus, you’ll be able to recognize a lot of these songs from your holiday shopping).

holidayactivityforkidsTo give you a brief history...the first version of the Nutcracker called The Nutcracker and The Mouse King premiered on December 18, 1892 in St. Petersburgh to limited popularity, but the score within the ballet by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was a huge success and brought us the classic song "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy." As the years progressed, the ballet really became famous when the world-renowned choreographer George Balachine choreographed a new version in 1954. If you have ever seen the Nutcracker it was most likely based off the choreography in Balachine’s production. The Nutcracker is one of the most famous ballets in present time and is a great holiday activity for kids and the whole family  that should not be missed during the holiday season.

In terms of showings, a professional company performing the Nutcracker will leave you breathless and in awe; however, it will come with a more expensive ticket. If you, like many of us, are looking for something a little more budget friendly, many local dance studios do versions of the show. For example, I have seen the San Diego Youth Ballet’s version of the Nutcracker for $15-$20, and thought it was wonderful. At the end of the day, you can’t help but leave with that holiday nostalgia after hearing that classical music, seeing children in adorable costumes, and being impressed by the leading dance soloists.

holidayactivityforkidsHere are a couple professional companies offering the Nutcracker this year in the San Diego area:

City Ballet of San Diego

San Diego Civic Youth Ballet

California Ballet

Moscow Ballet

West Coast Ballet Theatre

City Ballet

Keep Dancing Over The Holidays!

Tags: Holiday Dance Performances, dance recital, dance performance