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Wednesday 22nd February 2012 by C. Freeman

A group of students saw an acclaimed ballet production of the Nutcracker, envisioned by noted choreographer, Matthew Bourne. With high energy and elaborate costumes the story was a reworking of Pepita and Ivanov’s classic Christmas ballet, scored by Tchaikovsky.

Bourne’s version started in an orphanage with central character Clara travelling to Sweetieland, peopled by marshmallow girls, gobstopper boys and a trio of liquorice allsorts.

Bourne’s New Adventures company is based at Sadler’s Wells in London but is currently touring the UK. It will be appearing at The Curve in Leicester from Monday 27th February to Saturday 3rd March.

Around 50 students from Years 8 to 11 at Brooke Weston saw it at Milton Keynes. Grace Olajide from Year 10 said: ‘The dancing was much better than I thought it would be and it blew my expectations. When it finished we all thought we should do a Nutcracker showcase in school because it was really good and I was inspired by a lot of things.’

Jess Bell added: ‘The costumes were quite exaggerated, colourful and really stood out, especially in the sweets scene and the dancers changed costumes probably around four or five times. I didn’t know the story previously but it was easy to understand. The production was exciting and really energetic.’

Teacher Miss Bailey said: ‘The Year 8s have learned certain motifs from the work and they have to adapt and develop them to create their own solo choreography pieces. The Year 10s will study Nutcracker for their written exams.

‘Matthew Bourne is well known for his elaborate works, he always has huge sets, crazy costumes and reworks the traditional ballets totally but still keeps the original score. In the Sweetieland section there is a liquorice allsort doing Spanish dancing to the traditional score of music. It is really interesting to see that strong style of dance but still with the classical music underneath it. He layers it really well and it works fantastically. There was a really buzz and it is one of the best Matthew Bourne works I have seen. The students loved it.’

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