MEMETERIA by Thomas May

Music & the Arts

Donald Byrd’s The Harlem Nutcracker

This is a holiday treat I’m especially looking forward to: the upcoming “teaser” for choreographer extraordinaire Donald Byrd‘s The Harlem Nutcracker at Spectrum Dance Theater.

Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn’s Nutcracker Suite is the musical inspiration for this work-in-progress. “The original story centers around an African-American family in Harlem on Christmas Eve,” according to Spectrum’s description. “It highlights the unique warmth and centrality of the grandmother in African-American culture, the resilience of Black American families and Harlem as a center of the African Diaspora.”

This year’s performance is being billed as a “teaser” to the complete production, tentatively scheduled to premiere in a little over a year. It includes the whole show except for the final 20 minutes — which will be unveiled as a surprise at the full premiere.

Dates: DEC 8-11 + 15-18, 2022 at On the Boards, 100 W Roy Street, Seattle, WA 98119. Tickets here.

Filed under: Duke Ellington, holiday, music news, Spectrum Dance

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