Waiting in the Wings
By Jeanne Claire van Ryzin
Something magical happened to Ballet Austin’s production of ‘The Nutcracker’ now at the Long Center for the first time.
It glitters like never before.
After years in the University of Texas’ Bass Concert Hall — and last year spent at the Paramount Theatre while the Long Center finished construction and the Bass was under renovation — ‘The Nutcracker’ has landed in its new home with a re-invigorated splash of sugar and spice.
Maybe it’s the Long Center’s sharp acoustics that make Tchaikovsky’s romantic score sparkle. (The necessary use of recorded music last year at the Paramount gave the show a dreary feel.) Guest conductor Jeff Eckstein led the Austin Symphony Orchestra in an engaging performance.
Maybe it’s the excitement of performing in a new permanent venue built just for Austin’s top trio of performing arts groups (Ballet Austin, Austin Symphony Orchestra and Austin Lyric Opera). Across the cast Saturday night, the dancers projected verve and excitement...