A guide to Wi­chita’s five dif­fer­ent ‘Nutcracker’ pro­duc­tions this year

The Wichita Eagle (Sunday) - - Arts & Culture - BY DENISE NEIL AND MATT RIEDL

It used to be that fans of “The Nutcracker” had two choices in Wi­chita every Christ­mas sea­son.

They could catch a clas­sic per­for­mance at Friends Univer­sity put on by long­time bal­let teach­ers Stan and Sharon Rogers, or they could snag tick­ets to Bal­let Wi­chita’s ver­sion at Cen­tury II’s Con­cert Hall.

This year, it’s not so sim­ple.

The pop­u­lar Christ­mas bal­let, which fol­lows the ad­ven­tures of young Clara as she trav­els though a mag­i­cal candy world, is be­ing put on by at least five dif­fer­ent groups in Wi­chita this Christ­mas, and the per­for­mances peo­ple are used to see­ing from Friends and Cen­tury II will be com­pletely dif­fer­ent.

Here’s a guide to all of “The Nutcrack­ers” Wi­chita has to choose from this year.

MOSCOW BAL­LET’S “GREAT RUS­SIAN NUTCRACKER”

The first of­fer­ing of “The Nutcracker” hap­pens this week­end at The Or­pheum, and it will be per­formed by a tour­ing group of Rus­sian dancers. This ver­sion, per­formed to a recorded sound­track, fea­tures hand-painted sets and a sev­eral Rus­sian touches, in­clud­ing a lead char­ac­ter named Masha, a danc­ing Dove of Peace, on-stage pup­pets and a few acro­bat­ics thrown in. Though it’s a trav­el­ing com­pany, sev­eral lo­cal chil­dren au­di­tioned for and will ap­pear in the dance.

De­tails: 3 p.m. Sun­day, Wi­chita Or­pheum, 220 N. Broad­way. $32-$179, www.se­lec­taseat.com, 316755-7328;

COUR­TESY PHOTO

Moscow Bal­let will per­form “The Great Rus­sian Nutcracker” on Sun­day at The Or­pheum.

COUR­TESY Car­rie Es­gro

A new ver­sion of “The Nutcracker,” in­tended for bal­let fans with short at­ten­tion spans, will be per­formed by Dance Mechanix.

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