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Wednesday, November 26, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 12.0° F  Mostly Cloudy
The Daily


World-class guest stars make Dance Wisconsin's Nutcracker Fantasy sparkle

Nutcracker Fantasy, which opened Friday night and runs through Dec. 9, can't escape construction. The Dance Wisconsin performance is usually presented at the UW Memorial Union's Wisconsin Union Theater, which is closed for renovations. Its temporary home, Madison College's Mitby Theater, is surrounded by construction as well. But that didn't get in the way of cheerful elves, orderly lines of toy soldiers, a choir of carolers and impressive guest stars. >More
 Madison dance companies offer four takes on the timeless yuletide ballet, The Nutcracker

During the holiday season, The Nutcracker wafts through stores in myriad musical forms, from jazz to klezmer. There are also many versions of the ballet that goes with Tchaikovsky's famous score. I checked in with the directors of three local dance companies to learn more about their upcoming productions. >More
 UW Dance's Facets explores a continuum of emotions with ballet, poetry, music and visual art

Marlene Skog, a UW Dance Department faculty member, reveals her liaisons with mediums such as music, visual art and spoken-word poetry in Facets, a contemporary ballet performance at Lathrop Hall's H'Doubler Performance Space. The show runs through Saturday, Nov. 17. >More
 Kanopy's 'End Times' explores chaos and redemption through modern dance

"End Times," the newest Kanopy Dance Company production, is not all doom and gloom, despite what its name suggests. I caught the Friday-night performance at Overture Center's Promenade Hall, but the program continues through Sunday, Nov. 4. >More
 Dance Wisconsin's New Works battles cancer with inspiration

The word "cancer" doesn't make most people want to dance. Not so for breast-cancer survivor Jo Jean Retrum, director of Dance Wisconsin. For her, cancer represents a change of perspective -- something worth celebrating. "It changed my life," she says. "Things that would upset you before don't upset you anymore." >More
 UW Dance explores the universe through movement during PULSE: Intersections of Dance and Science

The UW Dance Department presented PULSE: Intersections of Dance and Science Friday night as part of the Wisconsin Science Festival, a four-day celebration of science that spans 150 events. This free dance concert at Lathrop Hall's Margaret H'Doubler Performance Space featured works from visiting guest artists, faculty and students. >More
 A witch has a kid over for dinner in Kanopy's Baba Yaga

Modern dance meets puppetry in Baba Yaga at Overture Center, Feb. 17-19. It's presented by Madison's Kanopy Dance Company, which is recently enjoying national success. That's thanks in part to new representation by Jody Kaplan & Associates, a New York-based agency that specializes in putting together tours for up-and-coming dance companies. >More
 New talent shines in UW Dance Department's Latitudes

Some of my favorite UW dance majors have graduated or are poised to do so soon. Latitudes, the dance department's faculty concert, proves that the department is attracting talented new students and developing the talents of ones I've seen before. >More
 Madison Ballet's The Nutcracker charms and inspires

Last year, The New York Times dance critic Alastair Macauley traveled the country to take in many versions of The Nutcracker, a sure prescription for Nutcracker burnout. But I would like to think if he'd seen a 30th anniversary performance by the Madison Ballet at the Overture Center, he would have been as charmed as I was. >More
 Dance Wisconsin's Nutcracker Fantasy reworks a traditional favorite

This past weekend, Nutcracker Fantasy by Dance Wisconsin ran at the Wisconsin Union Theater in a 35th-anniversary presentation. It is a sometimes trippy reworking of the holiday classic. Artistic director Jo Jean Retrum has done some serious tinkering, and at times these new ideas work. But at other times I missed a more traditional approach. >More
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