The Bang Group's "Nut/Cracked" at The Flea
The Bang Group
December 19-21 (Thursday & Friday at 7 PM and Saturday at 3 PM & 7 PM)
The Flea, 20 Thomas Street
(by subway, 1, 2, 3, A, C to Chambers Street, N or W to City Hall station)
Reservations: 212.226.0051 or www.theflea.org
The Cast: Chelsea Ainsworth, Dylan Baker, Louise Benkelman, Alex Biegelson, Clarence Brooks, Jason Collins, Dylan Crossman, Terence Duncan, Erin Gottwald, Stephanie Grover, Jeffrey Kazin, Isaac Lerner, Deborah Lohse, Daniel Morimoto, Kimberly Murry, Nik Owens, Nic Petry, Tommy Seibold, and Amber Sloan
Special Guests: Students from e.g. dance (12/19, 21 evening) Steffi Nossen Dance Company (12/20), Frank Sinatra High School for the Performing Arts (12/21 matinee)
Running time: one hour, suitable for all ages
"All kinds of dance idioms occur here. The introduction to the Waltz of the Flowers becomes a male solo in sweepingly lyrical ballet style; the Sugar Plum adagio is a you-suck-my-thumb-I'll-suck-yours male-male duet that ought to be irksome but whose grand dance ardor makes it oddly marvelous. You never know what'll happen next, but when it's over you find that what started as a series of flimsy sketches has turned into a passionate declaration of naivete in the best sense: innocence regained."
— Alastair Macaulay, The New York Times
"Nut/Cracked is a masterful mash-up of nostalgia, artistry, and fun. (It) unpacks the traditional holiday Nutcracker through a post-modern dance lens that will make you feel as if you have just eaten a big plate of your very favorite holiday sweets and, joyfully, not gained one pound."
— Jennifer Edwards, The Huffington Post
"...a rhythmic, cheeky take on 'Nutcracker' themes and music - a sweet and silly collection of gags."
— The New Yorker, 2018
Fasten your seat belts --- THE BANG GROUP'S delightfully offbeat Nut/Cracked returns for its 17th Anniversary Season with an ensemble of 19 dancers spreading holiday cheer. David Parker's comic, neo-vaudeville version of "The Nutcracker" will return for four performances, December 19-21, at The Flea, 20 Thomas Street, in downtown Manhattan. Special guests for the season are students from Steffi Nossen Dance Company, Frank Sinatra High School for the Performing Arts, and e.g. dance.
Parker's witty choreography is totally unpredictable as he whisks together an array of dance forms inspired by competition, intoxication, greed, Chinese take-out, bubble-wrap, toe shoes, and the perils of ice. Musically, the choreographer also takes a playful and wide-ranging approach through many incantations of the beloved Tchaikovsky score, including renderings by Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, and Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians, as well as the traditional orchestral suite.
The brainchild of Italian presenter Gianni Bruno and Parker, the show grew out of the choreographer's notorious male duet for classical thumb suckers, set to the Grand Pas de Deux from "The Nutcracker," which toured widely in Europe garnering prizes and great popularity. Bruno proposed that Parker create a version of the whole Nutcracker in the same anarchic, polyglot style. The work premiered in Genoa, Italy in 2003 and shortly thereafter at New York's Dance Theater Workshop (now NYLA). Its immediate success brought the show back for another season, and now it has deservedly become the downtown dance world's most ubiquitous holiday show.
Photo: Yi Chun Wu
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