So about a week ago I took the girls to the cutest version of the Nutcracker. It was only 50 minutes long, and in a very informal setting. It was perfect. It was actually at a storefront in the mall, only sat about 30 people in folding chairs, and encouraged the kids to clap for the dancers and boo and hiss at the mean Mouse king.
In preparation, we read the Nutcracker story and I explained repeatedly that there would be singing or talking - only dancing. They were so excited to go. We get there and sit in the second (of 2) row. K sits on my left, B on my lap, and Nana on my right. They were excited and a bit nervous about what was going to happen. The show starts and they are captivated. Then B starts to speak.
I've talked about how B is a very verbal child. Now, at 3 1/5, it is like my life is retold in running commentary. B started talking about the show - "look mommy, they are dancing and not talking, just like you said. You said there would be no talking and there is not, just dancing. Look at that pretty lady dancing, she is dancing and holding the nutcracker. She is very pretty and she is good dancer..." on and on it goes. She wasn't shouting but she wasn't exactly whispering either. Luckily the people around us found it cute. The best part was when the nutcracker was doing a solo. B says "mommy, why is that boy dancing?" I said he was telling his part of the story. She says, in a not so quiet voice "well, I just think he looks silly. Ballet is for girls not boys." At this point the room cracks up and I am certain the poor 17 year old who is playing the nutcracker can totally hear her. Hopefully he took it in the right spirit!
The favorite part for the girls were the costumes on the sugar plum fairy and other sweets. Afterwards they got to go take their pictures with the cast. Of course, they would go nowhere near the mean Mouse King. They loved it and immediately started asking when they could go again. B constantly talks about how she loves ballet "but not that mean mouse king".