December is full of holiday traditions, family gatherings, delicious food and (hopefully!) falling snow. As a child I looked forward to decorating the Christmas tree, drinking hot chocolate, building a snowman, opening presents and having time off from school to sleep in and watch Christmas movies all day long.
But one of my favorite Decembers was the first time my parents took me to see the Russian performance of The Nutcracker. My parents saved up money that year to buy tickets and we all went to the theatre dressed in our very best. Obsessed with ballet since the age of two, I couldn't wait to see the tutus, the pointe shoes and the magical dancing of the beautiful ballerinas.
In time I was no longer just watching the dancers on stage, but I was performing the roles that I had watched in awe. And even though I have heard the music from the ballet countless times, spent hours upon hours in the studio rehearsing the same scenes year after year, I can't help but feel like a giddy child when the first notes of the overture begin the play.
The Nutcracker is a wonderful story filled with imagination, beautiful music, gorgeous dancing and the feeling of childhood wonderment captured in a two hour experience. December is the perfect time to begin appreciating the art of dance and to continue encouraging its place in your child's life.
Dance will always be a part of my holiday tradition. No matter how old I get, The Nutcracker, and dance will bring magic to my life.