This time of year always puts me in the mind of the Nutcracker. Following Halloween, the memories of going to class in the dark, rehearsals through the weekends in preparation for school performances and full audience shows, and of course, the sound of Tchaikovsky on repeat come flooding back!
As some may or may not know, I work in Amazon Operations, and this will be my ninth Peak season with the company. My first year with Amazon, I shared a picture of myself in the classic First Arabesque pose in front of the fulfillment center I was working in to friends and family as my Christmas card. It may have been four years since performing the Nutcracker, but ballet and the holidays are one and the same to me! Since then, I’ve shared my love of ballet with my colleagues, and I just might have a few pictures getting others to join in the First Arabesque fun as well. (Anyone recognize The Spheres?)
Fast-forward to 2020, and we’ve seen posts on social media and news outlets of different companies and studios having to cancel Nutcracker productions. Dancers grow through the Nutcracker beyond any other production. Understanding the different characters, dancers have an annual chance to land that ‘next role,’ and for many this year limits these opportunities. Next year, someone may have grown past the role of Clara, or missed their senior year chance for a last performance, and I don’t think I’ll be able to translate that feeling to words.
Then, the other day, scrolling through social media, I stopped and watched a small video, to quickly find out it’s the latest Amazon advertisement. Admittedly, I didn’t recognize it as an ad at first- captured up in those feelings for the young ballerina depicted who is like many, missing out on this special holiday performance experience this year. This serves as a good reminder that while ballet is a performing art, the audience and methods to watch may change, but never stop dancing! Keep ballet in your world this Holiday season- ‘The Show Must Go On!’