It’s impossible to believe that the very first performance of Tchaikovsky‘s most famous ballet in 1892 was a flop. The poor ballerina who was dancing as the Sugar Plum Fairy was criticised for being “corpulent” and “podgy”. We not sure if that critic was alive now and saw Vanessa White’s new production what he would say as one of the joys is that she casts performers of different shapes, sizes, colors, genders, abilities and ages.
One thing we are very sure is that Pyotr Ilyich the queer composer who suppressed his own truth in his lifetime, would totally love how The Nutcracker was so imaginatively transformed into The Slutmaker.
It remarkable how wonderfully versatile Tchaikovsky’s glorious music lends itself to something so contemporary and completely outrageous. Whilst White turned the ballet into a story of sexual empowerment the original structure of the ballet has been well-preserved and remains true to its artistic integrity.
The Slutcracker is part ballet and part burlesque : its extremely witty, funny and extremely sexy. It has a very strong political/feminist bent and embraces diversity across several spectra. White’s cast brings together ballet dancers, burlesque performers, hula hoopers, belly dancers, actors, and even pole dancers.
Each year she tweaks The Slutcracker and cast performers of different shapes, sizes, colors, genders, abilities, ages (over 18), and talents.” “Sometimes inspiration for a new character, costume, or scene comes from an audition. I give a lot of wiggle room for performers to shape their characters—their diverse experiences bring a richness to both the storytelling and the choreography that a director can’t deliver on their own.”
The Slutcracker has been an annual tradition at Somerville Theatre in Massachusetts since 2008 always playing to sold out audience. However due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, this year’s rendition of The Slutcracker has been moved to an online streaming platform.
Slutcracker: The Movie, featuring archival footage from the 2019 season interwoven and edited into cinematic format, will be available for audiences across the globe to watch from the comfort of their own home starting this Thanksgiving.
Watch The Slutcracker HERE