George Balanchine's "The Nutcracker" pirouettes its way into South Florida with several productions this year.
They all have in common dancing children and elaborate costumes. One of the more sumptuous stagings comes from the Miami City Ballet, with performances in Miami and Fort Lauderdale.
"It was a huge undertaking," said Haydee Morales, costume designer with the dance company. "Not a big one, but a huge one. I think I went to New York three times [to work with the Balanchine Estate]. I spent a year and a half to two years designing and sketching. And then we spent about six months in production. I had two drapers/cutters, four to six seamstresses, a tailor…and an artist who did the headdresses and tiaras."
That artist was Maria, her younger sister. "She's very passionate…extremely creative and her work is impeccable," said Morales.
And if the sisters' creative passions diverge, does mom mediate? "Noooo," laughed Morales. "There are rules we have about these things. I try to keep in mind that there is life after ballet."