My daughter and I were supposed to see The Nutcracker this past weekend for a mommy daughter date performed by The California Ballet at The San Diego Civic Theater. Over the years I have seen various performances of The Nutcracker but The California Ballet has always been my favorite! We had been planning it for weeks. We had picked out fancy dresses and even got pedicures for the special day we had planned.
You see, growing up, I used to go see this show with my mom every year for as long as I can remember. This time of year is already so magical, but seeing this show was one of the most special parts of Christmas for me. I grew up dancing and when I was little I secretly dreamed to be cast in the show one day. As I grew up my interests changed, even though dancing has always been a part of my life. And even though I grew out of the dream of being a professional ballerina, I never grew out of loving The Nutcracker. The costumes. The music. The theater. I love it all.
So when my daughter started ballet classes last year it was only a matter of time before I knew it would be my turn to continue this holiday tradition and take her to the show so she can hopefully pass on the tradition to her own children. And this year, she turned four, the preferred age the theater recommends for children to attend due to the length of the performance, which is two hours including the intermission. Although, I love the fact that the various options of performances include a Toddler Friendly Performance and even a Autism Friendly Performance on Saturday, December 16th at 10:00am, both only 60 minutes long to prerecorded music!
As a child therapist, I love that there is accommodations for toddlers, and those with autism and other sensory and developmental disabilities and sensitivities. These performances have adjusted lighting and sound and guests are free to talk, leave their seats, and move freely during the performance. This is especially helpful if guests need to stretch, stand, and move! They even have designated safe/quiet areas in the lobby!
Then it came to the day of the show. Out of the blue, I heard my daughter cough a few times throughout the night but tried not to think much of it until she came to me around 3:00am telling me she didn’t feel well. She ended up crawling into bed with me and as I held her I heard whining from achiness and sniffles from a stuffed up nose. I ended up giving her Tylenol around 5:00am since she was warm to the touch. When she woke up a few hours later, I took her temperature and she was running a 101-degree fever. She complained of a sore throat and a stomachache, too. At that moment I knew we wouldn’t be able to see the show.
I was disappointed that we would miss the show, but she was devastated. As a mom, I just couldn’t let my daughter spend hours away from home with a fever and illness complaints and think she would fully enjoy herself at the show she has been counting the minutes to see for days. Whether we stayed home or not, the show would have not been the same. Plus, I couldn’t bear the thought of exposing other children and families to whatever sickness she had.
Luckily, there are more performances over the next two weeks leading up until Christmas. We are planning on going this upcoming weekend, so please stay tuned for Part II of this blog and behind the scenes of our experience!
In the meantime, make a holiday memory with your children and please visit http://californiaballet.org for tickets to The Nutcracker and other shows like The Great Gatsby – coming this April 2018! Other shows this season included Swan Lake and Billy Elliott! To become a member for various perks and join as low as $25 a year, please visit http://californiaballet.org/membership/ You can also call 570-1100 from any San Diego area code including 760, 858, and 619!
The Nutcracker will be performed on December 15-17 and December 20-23. They have matinee and evening performances available! The shows, except the Toddler and Autism/Sensory friendly performances, have a live orchestra under the baton of Music Director John Stubbs, Tchaikovsky’s extravagant score comes to life with a cast of over 150!
Before the show there are red carpet photo opportunities beginning one hour before all performances, weather permitting. After the show, you can meet the cast at their Sugar Plum Parties in the Grand Salon following the 1:00, 2:30, and 5:30 performances. Tickets start as low as $25 and children under 12 receive up to a 20% discount! Pricing includes a $2.50 facility restoration fee.
To be continued…