The Nutcracker Prince is probably one of the most iconic figures of Christmas. The little wooden doll with a huge head, a wide grinning mouth, and a cottony beard, dressed in the garb of a soldier captain is, as we all know, a cursed prince who is saved by the bravery of a little girl. In return, he brings her on a fantastic and magical adventure. Get to know the charming and talented dancers who will be bringing us on a magical journey in Ballet Philippines’ production of Edna Vida and Alice Reyes’ The Nutcracker.
Victor has essayed soloist and principal roles with the company before, most recently Prince Seigfried in Swan Lake, but as it seems for most of our leads, this would be his first time as The Nutcracker Prince. He says that “It’s an honor to be cast as The Nutcracker Prince. It’s a very challenging role, and I feel honored that they trust me to give it justice.”
He is excited for people to see the Grand Pas de Deux. As a dancer, he feels that it is what everyone will be anticipating to see. But what excites him most is the things that happen after a run or performance. “The rest day is a factor”, he said jokingly, “but what excites me most is what we become after this experience. The improvement we achieved in preparing and doing the role is what excite me the most. Because for me, the product of my work is the growth that I take with me after every production.“
Lester will be making his debut in a principal role in this production. He has essayed key roles in the company’s modern and classical works, he was notably featured as Rothbart in Nonoy Froilan’s restaging of Swan Lake.
“This role really means a lot to me because this is my first time doing a Principal role with the company and I get to share this role with people like Victor and Nobuo Fujino, and I get to Partner Candice [Adea] so it really is a big deal for me. There is pressure but there is excitement. I got to do the pas de deux when I was still in school but it’s so much different now. I have a lot I need to pin down in terms of partnering, maturity, and acting as a prince. I feel like that is the biggest challenge because sometimes I don’t know where I would get all of it but still I am so excited to be have the opportunity to do this role and for everything that comes after it."
Returning as guest artist for this production is Nobuo Fujino. He essayed the role of the Prince in Ballet Philippines' production of Sleeping Beauty in 2011. In an interview with The Philippine Daily Inquirer he has this to say about the show and his character:
“There are different classes of princes,” he noted.
Siegfried of “Swan Lake” is a proper prince “who never bows to people, stays upright, doesn’t smile or show obvious facial expressions,” Fujino said.
Albrecht from “Giselle” means bigger movements because “he can be playful,” which Fujino said was better than Siegfried’s “boring” character. “Siegfried feels love for a swan but doesn’t really show. I get stiff shoulders.”
The role of Nutcracker Prince is “a hard one,” said the guest artist. The challenge is to portray the prince as a convincing character “because he transforms from a doll. He’s a shape from Clara’s dream. ‘Who the hell is that?’”
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Catch these charming princes in Ballet Philippines' The Nutcracker, running until December 10 at the CCP Main Theater. For tickets, call Ballet Philippines at (+632) 551-1003, the CCP Box Office at (+632) 832-3704, or Ticketworld at (+632) 891-9999 or Ticketworld.com.ph.