'Tis the season for Nutcracker, not just here, but across the nation. The Nutcracker Ballet has taken the country by storm. In our area alone, there are three professional productions of the ballet. All give young dancers the opportunity to perform in front of an audience, to be exposed to professional dancers from ballet companies across the country, and to make priceless memories.
Our daughter just performed in the Nutcracker for the third year in a row. As a busy 9th grader, there are days when any sane person would question why she would want to add numerous rehearsals to her already-packed weekends. Not only does it take her time, but it takes our time and a fair amount of money, too.
But do I regret having her participate? Not one bit. She gains poise and confidence. She meets new friends from other parts of town. She gets to be a small part of something much bigger than herself. To have the opportunity to dance in a 2,700-seat auditorium is something she'll remember all of her life. It's huge for her, and it's huge for every one of the dancers in Nutcracker productions across the country, on stages large and small.
So this holiday season, I encourage you to seek out a Nutcracker performance in your town. If you've never seen it, you will be delighted by the music, the costumes, and the choreography. If you've seen it many, many times (as I have), go again and see it with fresh eyes. Let it become part of your family's Christmas traditions.
Remember that there are dreams up on that stage. Go and be part of them.