Fringe Box



Review: The Nutcracker Ballet – GLive

Published on: 9 Jan, 2024
Updated on: 9 Jan, 2024

By Alice Fowler

Tchaikovsky’s much-loved classical ballet The Nutcracker takes place on Christmas Eve, at the foot of a towering Christmas tree, in a child’s imagination. It’s the perfect festive treat – but also, as the Mergaliyev Classical Ballet showed at its recent performances at Guildford’s GLive, a cheering sight in gloomy January, too.

Under artistic directors Yassaui and Sophie Mergaliyev, this joyful production puts the emphasis on costume and a dazzling sequence of set-piece dances, rather than on story.

Happily, the tale of a young girl who befriends a nutcracker that comes to life and wages battle against the Mouse King and his cohorts is so familiar that no one will really mind.

The company features dancers from around the world, with Clara and the Prince dancing with particular verve and poise. The contrast between the adult world – all white gloves and formal, slightly stuffy dances – and the playful freedom and innocence of childhood, is well portrayed and a live orchestra enhanced the evening.

Lovers of classical music have plenty to look forward to this spring at Guildford’s local, state-of-the-art entertainment venue. Its International Concert Series continues through 2024 with Dvorak’s New World Symphony on February 24; Beethoven: the man and his music, on April 11; and Bruch’s Violin Concerto on May 17. To book, see, or Box Office 0343 310 0055.

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