Hip hop twist on holiday classic features hip hop legend

“The Hip Hop Nutcracker” is slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.
Caption
“The Hip Hop Nutcracker” is slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Re-mixed, re-imagined version is a family-friendly holiday mash-up

Tchaikovsky goes hip hop? Well, that’s the breaks.

Hip hop legend Kurtis Blow will be featured as MC of “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.

Caption
Hip hop legend Kurtis Blow will be featured as MC of the seventh season tour of “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Hip hop legend Kurtis Blow will be featured as MC of the seventh season tour of “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.
Caption
Hip hop legend Kurtis Blow will be featured as MC of the seventh season tour of “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” slated Friday, Dec. 3 at the Victoria Theatre courtesy of Dayton Live’s Dayton Children’s Family Series.

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

The 62-year-old trailblazer, the first rapper to ever be signed to a major label, is known for hit songs such as “8 Million Stories,” “AJ,” “Basketball” and the perennial first rap holiday song, “Christmas Rappin.’” In addition to releasing the certified gold rap song “The Breaks” from his 1980 self-titled debut album, he continues to influence the world of hip hop, especially in films such as “Notorious” and “Straight Outta Compton.” He was also an associate producer on the hit Netflix series “The Get Down.” In June 2018, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio notably appointed him to the Nightlife Advisory Board, advocating on behalf of music venues and clubs.

Most recently, on Dec. 6, 2020, he had a heart transplant.

“Through the isolation of the pandemic and, for me, personally the gift of receiving a new heart, it is time to hope again,” said Kurtis Walker, known professionally as Kurtis Blow, in a release. “And the season of hope is Christmas.”

“The Hip Hop Nutcracker” follows the classic “Nutcracker” story in which Clara and her Prince embark on a dream adventure battling a gang of mice, the Land of Sweets and more. Innovative digital graffiti and visuals will transform E.T.A. Hoffmann’s beloved story from traditional 19th century Germany to the vibrancy and diversity of contemporary New York City.

Directed and choreographed by Jennifer Weber, the production’s all-star dancers from across the country are Ann Slyvia Clark, Anthony “Omen” Cabrera, Bryan Longchamp, Dustin “D-payne” Payne, Ethan Evaro, Gabriel Emphasis, Jackie “JK-47″ Agudo, Jon “Gifted” Jimenez, Lisa “L boogie” Bauford, Liliana Frias, Randi “Rascal” Freitas, Seth “Reaktion” Hillard, and Zuce Morales.

The production also features DJ Boo of New York City and electric violinist Jarvis Benson of New York City.

“It’s incredible for me to meet fans, and their kids, and their kids’ kids who love hip hop music,” Blow said. “It reminds me of how ‘The Nutcracker’ brings people of all ages together, too. I hope everyone makes holiday memories for a lifetime when they come to our show.”

HOW TO GO

What: “The Hip Hop Nutcracker”

Where: Victoria Theatre, 138 N. Main St., Dayton

When: Friday, Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $39-$89

Tickets: Call 937-228-3630 or visit daytonlive.org/hip-hop-nutcracker

FYI: Masks are required for patrons 6 and older

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