Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theater (AXCBT) returns home to the Axelrod Performing Arts Center on December 11 to begin his series of “The Nutcracker rocks, “ a family favorite annual holiday tradition.
This contemporary adaptation of the ballet was conceived by the artistic director of AXCBT, Gabriel Chajnik. Based on Tchaikovsky’s beloved sheet music, “The Nutcracker Rocks”, features a reworked rock sheet music by Alex Levine and Alex Rosamilia of The Gaslight Anthem. The Gaslight Anthem, a popular rock band from New Jersey hails from New Brunswick, NJ.
Broadway’s Josh Canfield, formerly a cast member of NBC’s Survivor, stars as Uncle Dross. “I was so excited to have been invited to join ‘The Nutcracker Rocks’ at Axelrod, because if I’m being honest I never would have thought that I would be in The Nutcracker for the very obvious reason that I am not a ballet dancer. But Gabriel, our director, did an amazing job with the authors of the book to improve the story … Add some fun additions to the Gaslight Anthem score and I can guarantee the audience will enjoy it. ‘a real holiday treat that will be fun and festive for the whole family. “
With a script updated by Reuben Jackson and Jason Cohen, “The Nutcracker Rocks” follows bored teenager Clara, who has to put up with her family’s posh holiday party on the Upper East Side until her eccentric uncle. Dross shows up with his rock music, his magic toys, and a special gift for Clara. He then transports Clara to a magical land – the Jersey Shore – where the traditional Land of Sweets is a candy store in Asbury Park.
Other Jersey Shore contributors include associate choreographer Dylan Pearce (Point Pleasant), whose credits include assistant choreographer for the “Radio City Christmas Spectacular”. Other collaborators include costume designer Jose Solis and set designer Fred Sorrentino.
The fully staged and costumed production features the company’s professional members and AXCBT apprentices. “The Nutcracker Rocks” runs December 11-19.
* All members of the public (12 years and older) must provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 PCR test performed by a medical provider within 72 hours of the show start time. Masks are always mandatory in the arts center. Tickets range from $ 48 to $ 56, with exclusive discounts for students. Group rates are also available for groups of ten or more.