By Jack Barnes
The Hip Hop Nutcracker(www.hiphopnutcracker.com), a contemporary dance spectacle set to Tchaikovsky’s timeless music, celebrates its 5th year anniversary and hits the road this holiday season to 29 North American cities. The show premieres in Riverside, CA on November 8. Produced by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) with Executive Producer, Eva Price, and co-commissioned by the United Palace of Cultural Arts, The Hip Hop Nutcracker will feature MC Kurtis Blow, one of hip hop’s founding fathers, opening the show with a short set before rapping the introduction.
Directed and choreographed by Jennifer Weber, The Hip Hop Nutcracker is a full-length production featuring a dozen all-star dancers, an on-stage DJ and an electric violinist. The traditional classic Tchaikovsky score beautifully complements the power moves of these 12 dancers, with transitional and incidental music re-mixed and re-imagined, helping to bring a beautifully surprising and contemporary vibe to the production.
Preview the action by visiting: http://hiphopnutcracker.com/
“It’s been exciting to evolve the show over the last five years as audiences continue to come back to see the creative changes we make to the production,” says Weber. “The dancers continue to raise the bar each year which has taken the show to new heights.”
Just like the classic Nutcracker story, in The Hip Hop Nutcracker Maria-Clara and the Nutcracker prince go on a dream adventure battling a gang of mice, visiting the land of sweets and learning the lessons of the holiday season. Innovative digital graffiti and visuals transform the landscape of E.T.A. Hoffmann’s beloved story from traditional 19th Century Germany to the vibrant, diverse sights and sounds of a colorful and contemporary New York City. Through the modern, self-expressive gaze of hip hop culture, the dynamic performers of The Hip Hop Nutcracker celebrate the magic of the entire holiday season on the most inclusive holiday of them all – New Year’s Eve, a time for new beginnings.
For more about The Hip Hop Nutcracker and to find information about where to purchase tickets, please visit: http://hiphopnutcracker.com/#
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The Hip Hop Nutcracker 2018 tour:
November 8 Riverside, CA Fox Performing Arts Center
November 10 Oakland, CA Paramount Theatre
November 11 Long Beach, CA Terrace Theatre
November 13, 14 Portland, OR Keller Auditorium
November 15 Tacoma, WA Pantages Theater
November 17 Seattle, WA Paramount Theatre
November 20, 21 St. Paul, MN Ordway Center
November 23 Chattanooga, TN Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Auditorium
November 24 Nashville, TN Polk Theatre
November 25 Augusta, GA Miller Theater
November 27 Milwaukee, WI Riverside Theatre
November 29 Kansas City, MO Midland Theatre
November 30 St. Louis, MO Fox Theatre
December 1 Rosemont, IL Rosemont Theater
December 3 London, ON Budweiser Gardens
December 6 Detroit, MI Masonic Temple Theatre
December 7 Indianapolis, IN Murat Theatre
December 8 Columbus, OH Palace Theatre
December 9 Cleveland, OH Palace Theater
December 11,12 Pittsburgh, PA Benedum Center
December 13 Asbury, NJ Paramount Theatre
December 14 Newark, NJ New Jersey Performing Arts Center
December 15,16 Boston, MA Colonial Theatre
December 18,19 North Bethesda, MD Strathmore
December 20 Durham, NC Durham Performing Arts Center
December 22 Rochester, NY Auditorium Theatre
December 23 Brooklyn, NY Kings Theatre
December 26-29 Charlotte, NC Knight Theater
December 30 Richmond, VA Altria Theatre
JENNIFER WEBER (Director/Choreographer) is a Lucille Lortel and Bessie-nominated choreographer. Her work has been performed at Jacob’s Pillow, The Apollo, The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, London’s Southbank Center, and The Stanislavsky Music Theatre, Moscow. She is the co-creator, director, and choreographer of the annual hit holiday show, The Hip Hop Nutcracker. Weber was commissioned by New York City Center to create a new work for NYCB principal dancers Tiler Peck, Amar Ramasar and hip hop legend Lil Buck for the 2018 Fall For Dance Festival. Theatre choreography credits include KPOP (Ars Nova/Lortel Nom), Teenage Dick (The Public/Ma-Yi) Cruel Intentions (LPR),Stockholm (Hudson Stage), PBS’s Odd Squad Live! (National Tour). Commercial direction/choreography: Marc Jacobs, CK2, American Express, Uber, Ulta, L’Oreal, Reebok, and Philosophy. Weber is also the creative director of Lifetime’s Bring It Live! national tour. jenniferwebernyc.com.
EVA PRICE (Executive Producer) is a two-time Tony Award-winning producer whose credits include over 15 Broadway plays, musicals, and concerts. She is a member of The Broadway League’s Board of Governors and was named one of Crain’s NY 40 Under Forty Rising Business Stars. Most recently, she has joined as a creative advisor to Killer Content and Abigail Disney’s new studio venture Level Forward, which aims to champion works by women and people of color. Current and notable productions include: Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill (A.R.T.), Angels in America (Tony-winning Broadway Revival starring Nathan Lane and Andrew Garfield) Dear Evan Hansen (6 Tony Awards); On Your Feet! (The Story of Gloria and Emilio Estefan); Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons on Broadway!; Peter and the Starcatcher (5 Tony Awards); Colin Quinn Long Story Short (directed by Jerry Seinfeld); Annie (Tony-
Mike Fitelson (Writer/Co-Creator) is the executive producer at the United Palace, the 88-year-old Wonder Theatre in Washington Heights, Manhattan’s 4th largest theatre. Previously as the executive director of the United Palace of Cultural Arts (UPCA) he co-created “The Hip Hop Nutcracker” with Jennifer Weber, adapting the story and supplying the images for the scenery, and produced its premiere. Fitelson has worked to build the Northern Manhattan arts community for 15 years. He co-founded the annual arts festival, the Uptown Arts Stroll, in 2003; served in every capacity of the Manhattan Times, the bilingual community newspaper of Washington Heights and Inwood, from 2002-2011; and helped found the nonprofit Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance in 2006. He is delighted the show is playing the Paramount Theatre in Oakland, California where he was born and raised.
About Kurtis Blow
A hip-hop legend, Kurtis Blow was 20 in 1979, when he became the first rapper to be signed by a major label. Mercury released “Christmas Rappin’,” and it sold more than 400,000 copies, becoming an annual classic. Its gold follow-up, The Breaks, helped ignite an international “Rap Attack.” He released 10 albums in over 11 years: his full-length debut, Kurtis Blow; his second, Deuce, a Top 50 Pop album and a big hit across Europe; Party Time featuring a pioneering fusion of rap and gogo; and Ego Trip, including the hits “8 Million Stories,” “AJ” and “Basketball.” In 1985 he released America, featuring “If I Ruled the World,” a Top 5 hit on Billboard’s R&B chart; Columbia/Sony recording artist Nas debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Pop Album chart with a cover of the song in 1997. For more information, visit KurtisBlow.com.
New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), located in downtown Newark, N.J., is America’s most diverse performing arts center, and the artistic, cultural, educational and civic center of New Jersey – where great performances and events enhance and transform lives every day. NJPAC brings diverse communities together, providing access to all and showcasing the state’s and the world’s best artists while acting as a leading catalyst in the revitalization of its home city. Through its extensive Arts Education programs, NJPAC is shaping the next generation of artists and arts enthusiasts. NJPAC has attracted nearly 10 million visitors (including over 1.6 million children) since opening its doors in 1997, and nurtures meaningful and lasting relationships with each of its constituents.
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Newark, New Jersey 07102
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