The best holiday traditions have a way of standing the test of time, even if it means overcoming the odds—that’s the magic of this time of year. For the city of Houston, one of those traditions is a dazzling performance of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker by Houston Ballet. Even though the company’s Wortham Theater home is closed until mid-2018 after suffering in Hurricane Harvey, visions of sugar plum fairies will dance their way across the stage this season in as splendid fashion as ever thanks to a pair of local venues.
The production premiered on December 10 at Smart Financial Centre in Sugarland, where it will remain until December 23. Following that engagement, the show heads downtown to the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts for a second slate of performances from December 30 through January 6.
Even longtime admirers of the iconic ballet are likely to find something new to appreciate in Artistic Director Stanton Welch’s lavish production. Now in its second year, Mr. Welch’s breathtaking design emphasizes all things bold and bright, with eye-popping sets and costumes and, at Smart Financial Centre, a pair of screens that show the dancers’ impeccable footwork. Ermanno Florio conducts the Houston Ballet Orchestra, leading the corps through some of the season’s most recognizable themes.
With its timeless story of Clara and her prince and choreography and design to appeal to the whole family, Mr. Welch’s production has the hallmarks of a classic in the making—something that locals look forward to year after year and that visitors clamor to add to their holiday to-do list.
Tickets are available at houstonballet.org.
Featured image: Artists of Houston Ballet. Photo by Amitava Sarkar, courtesy of Houston Ballet.