Sunday, December 20, 2009
The 25 Posts of Christmas: The Swinging-est Nutcracker Ever
In 1960, Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn arranged their own adaptation of the classic Nutcracker Suite by Tchaikovsky. Changing the names of some of the movements to such titles as Toot Toot Tootsie Toot (Dance of the Reed-Flutes), Peanut Brittle Brigade (March), Sugar Rum Cherry (Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy), The Volga Vouty (Russian Trepak), Chinoiserie (Chinese Tea), Dance of the Floreadores (Waltz of the Flowers), and Arabesque Cookie (Arabian Coffee). The suite is was arranged for Ellington's Big Band at the time and since has gone on to be performed by countless others. I was first introduced to this amazing take on the ballet in college. It has since become a staple of holiday listening. If you have never heard it you are in for a treat. I guarantee that! Even if you dislike the original piece, you will find a whole new appreciation for it when you hear Duke's classic take on it. Here it is for you now. Here is Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite. Enjoy!
Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite