Monday, December 05, 2011

Nutcracker Memories

A former dancer with the Sacramento Ballet, Jenny Gilmore, remarked recently about how many dancers she had known had moved on to other creative endeavors or retired from the stage to pursue other important parts of their lives.  She was also reflecting on the memories they all shared from performing in the annual Nutcracker.  I was fortunate to photograph ten years of those productions from 1997 to 2006.  My work with the company began when my daughter was given a small role as a "cherub" in 1997.  Wanting to photograph her I offered to shoot the whole performance for the Sacramento Bee.  I got the assignment.  During the next few years my daughter had other roles as a "Mother Ginger child" and a "soldier" battling the Mouse King.  I continued in my volunteer role photographing the Nutcracker for the Sacramento Ballet and virtually every other ballet the company performed including their first international tour to Shanghai and Beijing, China in 2007.  I too have memories of those Nutcrackers, the incredible athletes/artists that the dancers were, the incomparable artistic directors Ron Cunningham and Carinne Binda, and Lt. Col. (Ret) Fred Shadle, the true heart and soul of the company.   I dug into my film archives and digital files and put this show together.  Video celebrates the dance, still photography celebrates the dancer.  The Nutcracker will always be part of my holiday season and I hope yours as well.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful walk back through time and oh so many faces that have come and gone. Thank you for this tribute.
Nolan T'Sani