Clara/Not clara: A NUTCRACKER

Conceived by Katie Rose McLaughlin, Joshua William Gelb, and Ian Axness

Story by Dan O'Neil / Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky


The Nutcracker Ballet is holiday staple that annually sets into sharp relief the passing years and the gradual process by which we grow older. In an immersive dance-theatre staging this new adaptation of the classic ballet uses Tchaikovsky's music to depict the life-story of a woman (and dancer) named Clara, who's childhood, young adulthood, middle and old age appear simultaneously accompanied by live musicians in a playful yet poignant exploration of coming-of-age-stories bookended by tragic death, of leaving things unsaid, and of loved ones left behind. Traversing synchronously a single lifetime, Clara/Not Clara reinvents a classic narrative for a contemporary audience of all ages, inviting them to wander freely and explore a dreamlike world in which the breadth of life’s manifold emotions and experiences harmoniously coexist.

A Nutcracker, Part 1 was presented by JV Squad and Designated Movement in association with the Knockdown Center and Sprung Wood Solutions, December 2014 at the Knockdown Center's Annex Space. Featuring: Valda Setterfield, Kaitlyn Gilliland, Lisa Lockwood, Gary Chyst, Pierre Guilbault and introducing Louisa Blakely. Directed by Joshua William Gelb. Choreography by Katie Rose McLaughlin. Music Arrangements by Ian Axness. Set Design by Sara Walsh. Lighting Design by Josh Smith. Sound Design by Gavin Price. Costume Design by Diego Montoya.