Long Beach Ballet’s Nutcracker

The Nutcracker Returns to Long Beach

The Long Beach Ballet presents its 36th annual rendition of the holiday classic. The Nutcracker, the timeless tale, returns to fill the minds of a new generation of kiddos with thoughts of holiday adventure. Numerous productions of The Nutcracker excite the Southland every season (some are even mentioned on this blog). However, The Long Beach Ballet truly pulls out all the stops. And there are two more shows left for you to possibly check out this holiday season on the 21st and 22nd. The ticket situation is as follows:

  • $78.00  Main Orchestra/ Main Loge
  • $55.00  Perimeter Orchestra/ Perimeter Loge
  • $34.00  Balcony

Here’s a link to the website for additional ticket purchase details.

But what exactly sets this performance of The Nutcracker apart from all the others? Long Beach Ballet’s interpretation is one of the only area productions that includes not only a live full orchestra, but a horse, flying sleigh, and pyrotechnics. There are certainly many options to choose from this holiday season, but this one should be near the top of your wish list.

Nevertheless, these added touches truly set this event apart from its contemporaries. The majesty of the live orchestra only serves to enrich the imaginative aspect of the experience. Not to mention that having an actual horse and sleigh on stage with the addition of pyrotechnics will excite anyone, especially young children. The high quality of the performance and attention to detail make all the difference.

Make your way to the Terrace Theater at the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center. Enjoy the performance and have a wonderful Holiday Season!


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L.A. County Holiday Celebration


The holiday season reaches peak prominence over the next few days. The L.A. County Holiday Celebration will help your ears prepare for some holiday spirit. Angelenos of all ages are welcome to attend this seasonal fiesta at the Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, located on Grand ave right in Los Angeles. The show is broadcast live on PBS SoCal, live streamed right here and presented live at the venue (obviously).The holiday celebration features more than 20 choirs, music ensembles and dance troupes from all over the city. The free three-hour show opens its doors at 2:30pm on Sunday, and organizers actually encourage people to pop in and out of the show as they please. Everything from an all-female mariachi band to a Korean dance troupe will be there to delight your spirit with some holiday glee. This is also the 58th annual L.A County Holiday Celebration so it is a tradition worth adopting and making a part of your holiday routine.

The holidays are truly the perfect time of the year to open yourself up to some multi-cultural goodness. We have to celebrate the cultural melting pot that is Los Angeles and continue to find strength in our wonderful diversity within the community. Here’s hoping that you all have a wonderful holiday season!




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It’s a Wonderful Life – Enjoy It

It’s been a pretty difficult year for a lot of people. 2016 has seen a proliferation of fear and doubt; our country and world are hurting in a multitude of ways. However, the Holiday Season stands as an opportunity for reflection, and a time for hope. It is Christmas Eve, and tonight like in years past, people will watch It’s a Wonderful Life across the country. This classic film touches a new life every time it is broadcast. Why is it so effective? Because it captures the doubt, the sentiment of hopelessness that comes from the fear of losing that American Dream. And yet then, it showcases the elation, and the realization, that it is never too late for a new hope to renew your spirit.

Frank Capra directs It’s a Wonderful Life in such a manner, that James Stewart’s Everyman protagonist feels simultaneously like a good friend and as the viewer themselves. We feel sympathy, but more importantly we feel empathy for a man, James Stewart’s character, George Bailey, who dedicates his life for good, but then falls into hard times. The audience feels his frustration, senses his doubt, and understands his plight. But the most important aspect of the film is that at the end, George is rewarded for his kindness, for his perpetual good. The community that he helps over the years are responsible for saving him in his time of need. This focus on community, on helping each other, on being your brother’s keeper, is what we must all remember.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays. Take a moment and witness the cinematic medicine for the existential pains that ail you. Remember that it can be and truly is a wonderful life.

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The Nutcracker at Royce Hall

Picture Cred: Reed Hutchinson

The holidays are really starting to creep up. If you are looking to capitalize on the holiday spirit for the whole family, check out The Nutcracker. It’s basically a holiday / Christmas tradition to see the classic performance. This year, you have the opportunity to see the wonderful LA Ballet perform their version. And the best part is that you can see them perform at the classic Royce Hall venue. Located smack dab within the beautiful UCLA campus, Royce Hall is known for its dazzling architecture and beautiful acoustics.

In the first place, Royce, both inside and out, looks great. However, it goes beyond aesthetics, the ushers and other staff members will make sure you have the best possible environment to watch the performance. Equally important, after a bit of rain Friday morning, the weather forecast looks great. Theater patrons can walk around the beautiful campus, and perhaps check out the Westwood area as a whole. The LA Ballet will offer multiple performance of The Nutcracker this weekend. There will be shows running from Friday night through Sunday evening.

Furthermore, besides the wonderful venue, the performance itself receives rave reviews year after year. In addition to being known for its entertainment star power, Los Angeles has a great performing arts scene. I have personally seen their rendition of The Nutcracker several times over the last few years, so I can attest to the quality. Enjoy some holiday cheer for the whole family this weekend! Here is a link to the website  for more details.


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