Nutcracker ballet productions amidst pandemic


The Dance Movement

Many local dance studios find ways to keep the holiday spirit alive by continuing Nutcracker ballet productions amidst pandemic.

Hannah Beeler, Staff Reporter

The show will go on for many local dance studios as they find ways to continue Nutcracker ballet productions amidst the pandemic.

“This year’s performances are definitely a lot different due to the pandemic,”  freshman, and dancer at the studio The Dance Movement, Aditi Tyagi said via text. “We have limited seating, performed outdoors, and required masks. During rehearsals, all of our dancers are required to wear masks whenever we are not socially distanced. For a majority of our dances, we are also spaced out about 6 feet. There are also several hand sanitizing stations, temperature checks, and studio cleanings.”

The Nutcracker is a story about a girl named Clara who receives a nutcracker on Christmas eve. The nutcracker comes alive in Clara’s dreams and they go on a journey together.

And while the story is the same, the performance is a bit different. 

“It’s just not the same and it is also not as fun because the experience is way different,” freshman, and dancer at Academy of Dance Arts, Lauren Sinclair said via text. “We aren’t allowed to do it at the Eisemann Center this year so we are having it at our dance studio. It is a very tight space and it is hard to run on and off stage. However I am really just looking forward to just another year of nutcracker.”

For Nutcracker director and choreographer at the studio The Dance Movement, Ivy Koval, the production has not been an easy feat.

“Planning a full-scale production in the midst of a pandemic was definitely a challenge,” Koval said via email. “Due to a large number of the costume companies being situated on the east coast and therefore shut down due to the pandemic, we weren’t even sure we would be able to order costumes for the dancers and have them arrive on time. The choreography also had to be adjusted quite a bit to account for social distancing. Especially the party scene where the lead character, Clara, greets her guests with a hug and there is a lot of other close contact between the dancers. Instead of hugging, the dancers just greeted each other with a curtsy and their formations were spread out so that they were 6ft away from each other.”

Many dancers hope to spread holiday cheer through this year’s performances.

“My studio is so grateful to be able to still perform,” Tyagi said. “I hope that everyone in my company has fun of course, as well as everyone watching, and I hope it gets them into the spirit of giving. I hope everyone is as thankful as we are to be able to do this. I’m looking forward to seeing the audience’s reactions to the different dynamics of our show.”

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  • The classic play follows the story of a young girl named Clara who receives a nutcracker on Christmas eve.

  • The performers can be seen taking precautions while performing by wearing masks.

  • Even amidst a pandemic, the performers hope to spread holiday cheer.