Babes in Toyland | Archive | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly

Babes in Toyland 

Thursday, Dec 18 2008
While visions of nutcrackers and Victorian misers dance through the Yuletide entertainment listings, this production offers a delightful alternative. Forty kids, age 9 to 19, romp through Alice Hammerstein Mathias and William Mount-Burke’s contemporary version of Victor Herbert’s operetta Babes in Toyland. But this is no kiddie pageant designed for parents to gush at their children onstage; rather, it is a polished exhibit of remarkable young performers. Director-choreographer Devon Yates, founder of Theatre 360 (a serious training ground for young performers), demands precision, timing and stage presence from her charges. Musical director Ryan Cantwell and his small orchestra provide excellent accompaniment. Highly impressive are some of the older students, particularly Samuel Lopez, who shines via his bizarre physicality and fine vocal work, as the play’s villain, Pete Pinkerton. Perhaps the finest moments comes with a pair of brand-new “toys” in the shape of ballet dancers Alex Hurren and Maxine Hillman, whose pas de deux give hope to the future of American dance. Scores of costumes are meticulously created by Erin Augustine, keeping the production values as strong as those afforded by host Pasadena Playhouse’s lighting and sound. Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave.; Thurs.-Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 2 & 6 p.m.; thru Dec. 21. (626) 356-7529. Theatre 360 and Pasadena Playhouse.
Thursdays, Fridays, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, Sundays, 2 & 6 p.m. Starts: Dec. 11. Continues through Dec. 21, 2008
click to enlarge 2862192.t.jpg

Related Stories

  • 85C Now Open in Pasadena — to the Delight of Coffee Lovers

    Thirteen is a lucky number for Pasadena, which just acquired the 13th California outlet of the Taiwanese bakery cafe 85°C. In case you’re not familiar with this chain—until now the closest branches were in Torrance and Gardena—the name indicates the perfect temperature for hot coffee. This leaves out the bakery...
  • iPhone 6 by Robbery 2

    Hordes of hollow-eyed Apple addicts stood in line overnight for the chance to buy the new iPhone 6. But in Torrance, some robbers decided not to wait. Two men broke into the AT&T store at the Del Amo Fashion Center mall just after 9 p.m. on Thursday, and threatened the...
  • Solar-Powered Gelato!

    If you've been wandering around Pasadena in a heat-wave haze the last month or so, you may have spotted a peculiar-looking contraption — imagine James Cameron's idea of a bike stroller — without realizing exactly what you were seeing. That people were probably gathered around the man by the snazzy...
  • 5 Great SoCal Farms For Fresh Eggs

    Eggs fresh from the farm from happy chickens just taste better than factory-produced, supermarket eggs. The yolks are a darker yellow hue and the texture is creamy and buttery. This, of course, is all contingent on the conditions in which the chickens are raised. Now there are different types of...
  • Stuff to Do This Week

    This week, take time to chill — at artist Oliver Payne's listening party, Chill Out, or at any number of the chill science-meets-art events that are part of Pasadena's AxS Festival, including this super chill fabric dome called SPHÆRÆ. Sit back and contemplate as you listen to the too-often silenced voices...

Related Content

Now Trending