writers on dancing

The DanceView Times, San Francisco Bay Area edition

       Volume 1, Number 12  December 15, 2003   An online supplement to DanceView magazine

Lyrical, Witty and Nutty as a Fruitcake: The Hard Nut Swings Into Town

The Hard Nut
Mark Morris Dance Group
[presented by Cal Performances]
Zellerbach Hall
Berkeley, California
[December 10-28, 2003]
December 12, 2003

by Paul Parish
copyright © 2003 by Paul Parish

Berkeley likes to think that Mark Morris belongs here. THe director of Cal Performances, Robert Cole, not only books Morris 's company several times a year, and has set up a semi-official residency for the company at Zellerbach Auditorium, but when Christmas rolls around, Cole actually conducts the orchestra for Morris's brilliant burlesque of the Nutcracker, the really big show called The Hard Nut, which opened last Friday night once again to a delighted audience, many of whom see it every year instead of the "regular" Nutcracker.

I've myself seen it every year since it first opened here in 1996—it's played with a few breaks, almost every year since—and I find it to be, like a great comic opera, mysteriously intricate and deep, and that the more I see it, the more satisfying it becomes. This year I was shocked to realize how romantic The Hard Nut is—despite all its overt ironies, and the manifold gay references, the pas de deux for Marie (Lauren Grant) and the Nutcracker (David Leventhal) made me cry, it was so beautiful, so touching, so delicate and poignant and fresh and musical, and so beautifully danced. It has I think become more classical, more mythic, more universal over the years, as this couple has taken over the roles—rather as Apollo evolved with Farrell and Martins in the roles, except that in the case of the Hard Nut, Leventhal and Grant are musical, generous, classical in their way of moving, and WARM. This is how our parents should have fallen in love.
read review


What's On This Week

Dec. 7-28
San Francisco Ballet
The Nutcracker
War Memorial Opera House

Dec. 10-28
Smuin Ballet
The Christmas Ballet

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater
700 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 978-2787

Through Dec. 14
Love Dances
Tara Brandel, choreography, 8:30 p.m.
848 Community Space
848 Divisadero St.
San Francisco, CA
(415) 701-1619

Dec. 17-18
Pilot 42: Closer to Present

Six Bay Area choreographers; 8 p.m.

ODC Theater
3153 17th St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-9834

Dec. 18-21
Mark Morris Dance Group
The Hard Nut

Zellerbach Hall
Bancroft Way and Telegraph Ave.
UC Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94707
(510) 642-9988
Friday, 8:00 p.m.; Saturday, 2:00 and 8:00 p.m.

Dec. 19-23
Oakland Ballet
The Nutcracker (Ronn Guidi)
Sat, Sun 2:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m
Paramount Theatre
2025 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 465-6400

Dec. 20
Moving arts Dance II

Featuring choreographed works by Viktor Kabaniev, Michael Lowe and Anandha Ray; 5 p.m.
SOLAD Dance Center
Citrus Marketplace
2260 Oak Grove Rd
Walnut Creek, CA
(925) 938-3300

Dec. 21
Yaelisa and Caminos Flamencos

Fiesta Navidad. 7 p.m.
ODC Theater
3153 17th St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-9834









Back Issues

Index of Reviews
Back Issues
About Us
Contact Us

Sister Sites:
Ballet Alert! Online
Ballet Talk
Ballet Blogs


This weeks' articles


Mindy  Aloff's Letter from New York

The Balanchine Celebration
New York City Ballet:
A Veteran and a Raw Recruit
by Mindy Aloff

Heart and Soul
by Mary Cargill

Kid Stuff
Cas Public's If You Go Down To the Woods Today
by Susan Reiter

San Francisco Ballet:
New Wheeldon (Rush)
by Rita Felciano

New Tomasson (7 For Eight)
by Paul Parish

Possokhov's New Firebird for OBT
by Rita Felciano

Moscow Festival Ballet and Scott Wells
by Paul Parish

Hamburg Ballet's Nijinsky:
Nijinsky—Lost in the Chaos
by Clare Croft

NijinskyMadness and Metaphor
by Alexandra Tomalonis

Nijinsky and the Ballets Russes
by George Jackson

Batsheva: Breaking Down Walls
by Lisa Traiger

Ronald K. Brown/Evidence
by Clare Croft

Choreographers Showcase
by Tehreema Mitha

Zoltan Nagy
by George Jackson







Rita Felciano
Alison Garcia
Ann Murphy
Paul Parish


The next issue of DanceView, a quarterly review of dance published since 1979, will be mailed out in mid-October.

DanceView is available by subscription ONLY. Don't miss it. It's a good read.  Black and white, 48 pages, no ads. Subscribe today!



Copyright ©2003 by by DanceView
last updated on December 1, 2003