'Nutcracker Key West' Offers Twist On A Holiday Classic


Friday, December 9th 2022, 5:54 am

By: Associated Press


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It’s a holiday classic with a Key West twist.

“Nutcracker Key West,” which depicts the city’s seafaring history and coral reef environment, opened Wednesday night with a cast of 18 professional dancers and 80 local children and adults.

The production offers a subtropical version of the tale of young Clara’s visit to the Sugarplum Fairy as dancers portraying snowy egrets, “jewels” from a 17th-century Spanish galleon shipwrecked off Key West, the Sea Star Mermaid and a nutcracker whose conch shell headdress is symbolic of the Keys.

Scenes include a choreographed dream battle between the Rooster King and the nutcracker-come-to-life, a sequence featuring children costumed as a flock of fluffy chickens and a fantasy where graceful egrets lead Clara and the nutcracker to a vessel that takes them to the Keys’ coral reef.

“ ‘Nutcracker Key West’ captures hundreds of years of creativity from the island culture, from the reef to garden parties to the Navy being here,” said the production’s artistic director Matthew Rawls. “It encapsulates all of that, and presents back to Key West a reflection of itself.”

Evening and matinee performances of “Nutcracker Key West” continue through Dec. 11 at the Tennessee Williams Theatre.

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