New England Ballet Theatre
The Fantastic Toyshop
Choreographed by Rachael Gnatowski
Theater of Performing Arts
359 Washington St.
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A Holiday Ballet for Hartford
To Nutcracker or not to Nutcracker? This was THE question we asked ourselves when forming NEBT. In the end, we decided to opt for a new holiday ballet, one that we could create specifically for the Greater Hartford community. Inspired by "La Boutique Fantasque" a ballet choreographed by Léonide Massine in 1919, our production includes special nods to the city and people of Hartford. You can catch costumes that resemble the Colt Armory, a dance for red harts (deer), even elves that double dutch! This show is pure holiday magic, and fun for all ages.
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It’s 1943, and it's Christmas Eve in Hartford. Virginia and her mother are preparing for the holiday. With Virginia’s father away at war, the season does not feel the same, but Virginia is still determined to make this Christmas special. The G.Fox & Co. Toyshop is the most fantastic place during Christmastime in the city. Virginia and her mother visit the store and are greeted by Beatrice Fox Auerbach herself. Beatrice shows all the children her magical dancing dolls. The children are delighted, but Virginia has just one true wish: for her father to be with them this Christmas.
Night falls, and the G.Fox & Co. delivery man and his elf helpers are bringing toys to the children of Hartford, making his final stop at Virginia’s house. Virginia wakes up to find the dancing dolls in her own living room! She is even more surprised when the delivery man uses magic to bring them to life. The dolls and the mischievous elves entertain Virginia, but when midnight arrives, it is time for them to go. There is one last surprise for Virginia; the delivery man is actually Santa Claus! He has received her Christmas wish, and with Beatrice and the Stars as a beacon guiding the way through the dark night, Virginia’s father finally returns home.