This week’s SoCal dance events include two folkloric troupes in Cerritos and Northridge, new works from CalArts in Valencia and downtown, more new choreography in Santa Monica, dancers with live music in Pasadena, demystifying dance in Lake View Terrace, and the start of Nutcracker season.
5. Something old, several new
CalArts’ faculty member Julie Bour and guest choreographers Juel D. Lane and Douglas Nielsen provide new choreography plus a restaging of Elisa Monte’s Pigs and Fishes highlight the annual CalArts Dance Department Winter Concert. Sharon Disney Lund Dance Theater, CalArts, 24700 McBean Pkwy., Valencia; Thurs.-Fri., Dec. 1-2, 8 p.m., $10, $5 students. https://dance.calarts.edu. Also at REDCAT, Disney Hall, 631 W. 2nd St., downtown; Fri.-Sat., Dec. 9-10, 8:30 p.m., $20, $16 students. 213-237-2800, http://redcat.org.
4. Folkloric Duo
Two folkloric companies are part of music and dance shows celebrating Mexican holiday traditions. Artistic director/choreographer Patricia Astorga-Casey leads Danzarts Sabor Mexico Dance Company, part of Merry-Achi Christmas with Grammy award-winning Sol de México de José Hernández and Mariachi Reyna de Los Angeles. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Dr., Cerritos, Sat., Dec. 3, 7 p.m., $35-$86. 562-467-8818, http://cerritoscenter.com. Ballet Folklórico de Kareli Montoya joins Grammy award-winner Jaime Cuéllar’s Mariachi Garibaldi in Feliz Navidad. Valley Performing Arts Center, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge; Sat., Dec. 3, 7 p.m., $38-$63, 818-677-3000, http://valleyperformingartscenter.org.
3. Dancing to the Street Symphony
Lineage Dance Company pairs with Street Symphony musicians for a new series of themed performances. For this debut, the dancers and musicians are joined by Urban Voices Project to tell the stories of men and women in jails and shelters with whom the Street Symphony has worked. Lineage Performing Arts Center, 89 S. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena; Sun., Dec. 4, 7 p.m., $15-$20. http://lineagedancepac.org/events.
2. Breaking in some New Shoes
The latest installment (the 10th actually) of New Shoes, showcasing new choreography, features Elizabeth Leister with Kristen Klehr and Samantha Mohr, PMPD (Rebecca Bryant & Don Nichols), Myrrhia Rodriguez, Stephanie Gilliland’s Tongue Dance Project, and Valerie Braaten/Alexsa Durrans. Highways Performance Space, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica; Fri.-Sat., Dec. 2-3, 8:30 p.m., $20, $15 students & seniors. 310-315-1459, http://highwaysperformance.org.
1. L.A.’s own Nutcracker
A brand-new, full length production of the Nutcracker ballet, set in Los Angeles circa 1912, was the audacious calling card when Los Angeles Ballet made its debut 11 years ago. Over the intervening years, the production has been polished to a lustrous patina and the dancing talent deepened as LAB’s Nutcracker has become an eagerly anticipated local holiday tradition. After this weekend’s opening, LAB can be found touring greater L.A. throughout December. With the onslaught of shopping frenzy, traffic congestion and uncertainties about the new year, a brief respite in a world of toy soldiers, dancing dolls, sugarplum fairies and brave nutcrackers provide a much needed source of comfort and joy. Tickets $31-$99, $24.50-$79 seniors, students & children 12 and under at 310-998-7782, http://LosAngelesBallet.org. AlexTheatre, 216 N. Brand Ave., Glendale; Sat., Dec. 3, 7:30 p.m., Sun., Dec. 4, 2 p.m., http://AlexTheatre.org. Also at Dolby Theatre, Hollywood & Highland, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., Dec. 10, 1 & 5 p.m., Sun., Dec. 11, 1 p.m.; 323-308-6300, http://dolbythreatre.com., Also at UCLA Royce Hall, 340 Royce Dr., Westwood; Fri., Dec. 16, 7:30, Sat.-Sun., Dec. 17-18, 1 & 5 p.m., http://cap.ucla.edu. Also at Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center, 1935 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Redondo Beach; Thurs.-Fri., Dec. 22-23, 7:30 p.m., Sat., Dec. 24, 11 a.m. & 3 p.m., http://rbpac.com.
Other dance of note (and just some of the Nutcracker ballets around town):
Benita Bike DanceArt demystifies how dance is created in a free program that focuses on two different short dances with each dance performed, discussed, and then reprised. With the L.A. Discovery Cube next door, the family-friendly show can be part of a full afternoon. Lake View Terrace Library, 12002 Osborne St., Lake View Terrace; Sat., Dec. 3, 2 p.m., free. http://danceart.org.
Since 1973 the respected training company Westside Ballet founded by Yvonne Mounsey has presented a Nutcracker ballet and in recent years has paired with the Santa Monica College Symphony. Look for former San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Antonio Lopez as the mysterious Drosselmeyer. Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica; Fri., Dec. 2, 7 p.m., Sat.-Sun., Dec. 3-4, 1 & 5 p.m., $45. 310-828-2018, http://WestsideBallet.tix.com.
Barak Ballet joins the Los Angeles Philharmonic with a Nutcracker Suite newly choreographed by artistic director Melissa Barak for LA Phil’s Toyota Youth Symphony concerts. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., downtown; Sat., Dec. 3, 11 a.m. http://laphil.com.
Marat Daukayev Ballet Theatre, the respected training company offers its Nutcracker with the Daukayev as Drosselmeyer. The final show welcomes San Francisco Ballet principals Maria Kochetkova and Vitor Luiz. Luckman Theatre, Cal State University Los Angeles, 5151 State University Dr., East L.A.; Sat. Dec. 3 & 10, 2 & 7 p.m., Sun., Dec. 4 & 11, 11:30 a.m. & 4:30 p.m., $42-$67. 800-838-3006, http://brownpapertickets.com/event/2704944.