Monday, January 23, 2012

Out and About Cape Town: The Nutcracker on Ice

With my handsome date (that would be my sexy husband - though mind you, don't you call him sexy, only I am allowed to call him that), a star babysitter for the children and an excited buzz we headed to The World Premier of The Nutcracker on Ice presented by Pieter Toerien and performed at the Artscape Theatre in Cape Town by the Imperial Ice Stars.  

To say that this was a remarkable show would not only be a sad understatement but it would in no way give a true reflection of this magical, fantastical, thrilling, acrobatic and awe inspiring production it truly was! 

So what's the story?  Maria is a young girl who because of her love brings her Nutcracker to life - and not just any Nutcracker but a magical one which was given to her by her godfather for Christmas.  And the Nutcracker is not the only fantastical character that we meet- there is a Mouse King,  a Prince and the Sugar Plum Fairy.  Chocolat, dancers from Spain, a Chinese couple in silk pajamas who perform the Tea dance and La Cafe from Arabia who perform a stunning dance in the air. 

Will your husband like it?
This is a strong production.  Even though at times it feels like you are watching ballet on ice, because the cast truly are so talented and they seem to just glide effortlessly from one side of the stage to the other- there are lots of strong men who perform the most amazing stunts on ice.  And in one scene, as you can see from the photo below, some of the stars who hung from the ceiling by ropes, upside down over solid ice. 

My dad is one of those macho types - nothing in tights kind of man- but I know that this will be a production that he will not easily forget. 

What about the children?  
I spent the entire time thinking - "oh wow, the children would love this scene"  and "I wish Declan were here to see the magic", or "I bet Chad would be asking me questions the whole way through" and "Ruthie will probably want to go the ice skating rink right after watching this".  The Nutcracker on Ice is definitely something your children would love.  My suggestion though would be to brief them on the storyline before they get there as you don't want them piping up in the middle of the production asking who that funny mouse looking creature was and why he was wearing pink tights?  Could be slightly embarrassing.

The cost of seats range from R100 to R380.  Even the cheaper seats offer are comfortably close to the stage as the theatre is not that big.  ( I base my opinion on the lower level) 

Of course there are some of you that are professional theatre goers - so just for you I'll add some information that might interest you too:)

Maria Orlova, Olga Sharentenko and Vadim Yarkov, who are part of this exciting and energetic cast were all competitive skaters in a former life and were part of the Russian National Ice Skating team with about 100 competition medals to show for it.  So your question - Is it any good?  With that type of experience you can be guaranteed to see lots of lifts, jumps and spins.  Apparently they do jumps and lifts  that have never been attempted before in a competition or on stage and that are so complex they haven't even been named yet!

Here's a short video preview

For further reading visit the Imperial Ice Stars website
And to book your tickets visit the Artscape website

This production will only be in Cape Town until the 12th of February and then it's leaving the sunny shores of Cape Town to perform in London at the Royal Albert Hall.  In fact the Imperial Ice Stars have performed to nearly 3 million people across 5 continents.

I would love to hear about your experience when you go. Come back and tell me.  I hope to take my children to see it too.

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