We know, sometimes watching a performance of The Nutcracker can feel a little repetitive. As with viewing A Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th Street, and that creepy stop-motion animation special that features Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, we find ourselves watching these shows and theater productions out of habit, not joy. But perhaps all these classic seasonal tales simply need a jumpstart, to be re-imagined rather redone. This is perhaps one of the reasons that the Ballet of the Dolls' take on The Nutcracker continues to be popular each Christmas. This year's show bats a sparkling false eyelash at current themes both tragic and trivial, including the failing economy and Barbie turning 50. The tone ranges from raunchy to silly to sweet (what holiday production doesn't have a little sweetener, be it artificial or natural?), and reminds us why we enjoy the holiday season in all its gaudy, spectacular, chaotic glory. Though the Nutcracker is primarily a Christmas story this ballet is also a great way to ring in the New Year. The evening's celebratory performance features appetizers, dessert, and champagne for $75.
Wednesdays, Sundays, 7 p.m.; Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Mondays, Tuesdays, 7 p.m.; Thu., Dec. 31, 9 p.m. Starts: Dec. 9. Continues through Dec. 27, 2009