Dancing through Wonderland

The Washington Ballet's forthcoming ''Alice'' is both a massive production and a massive hit

Clearly, people remain interested in Lewis Carroll’s nearly 150-year-old classic fantasy. Webre’s production draws mostly from the first book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, but he also incorporates elements and characters from the sequel Through The Looking Glass. Webre says growing up in a large Cuban-American family of eight kids inspired the ballet.

”I just related to the chaos that’s implicit in the cast of characters in Alice’s journey,” he says. Webre himself identifies with the twin brothers Tweedledum and Tweedledee. ”I have a brother who’s a year younger than I, and when we grew up we were dressed alike until we were 12 or so and rebelled.”

Several ballet companies have already signed on to stage Webre’s ballet after his company, which will likely keep it in its repertoire. Next week, the Washington Ballet will announce details about next season, which will include a new production of Dracula.

But the current season ends next month with Noche Latina, a program celebrating Latin-American dance – featuring music by Astrud Gilberto and Celia Cruz. While noting there’s inherent gay appeal in Alice, the gay Webre concedes that a show focused on Latin divas is ”just certainly a gay aesthetic.”

As of press time, only a few tickets remain of The Washington Ballet’s Alice (In Wonderland), running Thursday, April 12, through, Sunday, April 15, at the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater. Remaining tickets are $59 to $118. Call 202-467-4600 or visit kennedy-center.org.

Doug Rule covers the arts, theater, music, food, nightlife and culture as contributing editor for Metro Weekly.

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