By Laura Di Orio of Dance Informa.
Performing The Nutcracker becomes just another of the many yearly traditions that dancers may look forward to during the holiday season. Some professionals have performed in the ballet classic since they were young, some have danced the same role for years, others have aspirations of characters to someday portray, and for most, the ballet is synonymous with the joyous time of year. Whether they lead the Snowflakes, the Battle Scene or dance in the Land of the Sweets, most will say they have a favorite part.
Here, Dance Informa speaks with some professional dancers on those Nutcracker roles and others they’d wish to dance.
What is your favorite role to perform in The Nutcracker and why?
Ingrid Silva, dancer with Dance Theatre of Harlem
“Sugar Plum! It’s beautiful and captivating. It has a love story that is just brilliant, and I love the music. I love the couple dancing in the pas de deux, variations and coda sections. It’s challenging but also fun. My heart becomes full of joy.”
Gretchen Smith, corps de ballet, New York City Ballet
“My favorite Nutcracker role to perform, thus far, would probably be Demi-Soloist Flowers in Waltz of the Flowers, although most loathe it. It’s quite hard. Some would tell you Balanchine’s version is one of the hardest parts they have in their repertory. I just love it so much in that it is truly one of the most beautiful moments of the ballet to me. The music and the costumes! And I truly love the physical push. You really feel so accomplished when you run off the stage – calves and feet burning, out of breath, dying for water. Some call it ‘seven minutes in heaven’ in jest, which always makes me giggle. Flowers is so special to me for some reason. I adore it.”
Read more pro’s picks here!