Goldstar, the live entertainment discovery platform that connects its audience of 10 million ticket buyers with its more than 6,000 live entertainment venues and producer-partners across the U.S., announced that Long Beach Ballet has won the 12th Annual Goldstar National Nutcracker Award.
As the winner of the only award that honors live performances of the seasonal classic, Long Beach Ballet will receive a cash prize to go toward education and accessibility programs; the coveted “Nutty” statuette; and is officially named the best-loved Nutcracker in the U.S. for 2018. This production competed in a field of more than 65 nominees to take top honors in the audience-favorite competition.
“This is indeed a great honor to be voted the best of so many great Nutcrackers around the country,” says, Long Beach Ballet, Artistic Director David Wilcox. “This production has been a labor of love for me, my staff, and our wonderful dancers. We all look forward to many more years of magic and beauty!”
This stunning version of Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet has been a Southern Californian holiday favorite for more than 30 years. Accompanied by full symphony orchestra, the Long Beach The Nutcrackeralso boasts sparkling sets and costumes, a cast of more than 200, dazzling pyrotechnics and magic effects — along with a special appearance by Rebel, Long Beach Ballet’s gorgeous white Arabian horse. The Long Beach Ballet performs The Nutcracker with a full symphony orchestra and is one of only two ballet companies in the country that use two harps for their production to ensure the performance sounds exactly as Tchaikovsky intended it to sound. The Los Angeles Times calls Long Beach Ballet’s The Nutcracker “opulent, family-oriented holiday entertainment,” and The Huffington Post raves that it “enchants children and their parents with spectacle and awe.”
Born and raised in the Los Angeles area, David Wilcox began studying the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus at the age of 11. Having successfully completed all exams through the Advanced level, he continued his studies in London and at the age of 19 began his professional career in Germany. He spent seven years dancing with the Berlin Ballet, the Nuremberg Ballet and the Heidelberg Ballet. Returning home in 1978, he co-founded Long Beach Ballet and formed a professional company, which became Southern California’s most successful ballet company for 15 years. Mr. Wilcox has coached several of his students for international ballet competitions and many have gone on to join such companies as San Francisco Ballet, Hamburg Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, Milwaukee Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Oregon Ballet Theatre and others. Over the past several years he has produced and directed eight ballet tours to Asia and has staged three full-length ballets for the Classical Ballet of Guangzhou, China: The Nutcracker, La Bayadere and Cinderella. He is a prolific choreographer and has created numerous full-length ballets for the school and the company.
For 12 years, the Goldstar National Nutcracker Award has been the only nationwide award for live Nutcracker-themed performances, showcasing the astounding quality and variety of Nutcrackerproductions each year — from classic ballet to hip-hop, burlesque and more. Created by live entertainment ticket seller Goldstar (www.goldstar.com), the competition is based solely on Goldstarpurchasers’ post-show ratings to rank Nutcracker productions in order of audience favorite.
“We’d like to congratulate the entire company and crew on being named best-loved Nutcracker in the U.S.,” says Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy. “It’s a real testament to their talent, vision and commitment to showcasing a spectacular performance.”
Long Beach Ballet’s The Nutcracker will run until December 23 at the Long Beach Terrace Theatre
(300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA). Tickets are available on Goldstar here: https://www.goldstar.com/events/long-beach-ca/long-beach-ballet-the-nutcracker
This article was released by Goldstar.