The Nutcracker is the classic Christmas story of a girl's journey through a winter wonderland - but it's not all sugar and spice. "We do the cannon fires and the big battle scene...we have a lot of pyrotechnics," says Houston Dance Theatre Director Angela Jackson. "Parents tell me a lot, 'I knew my daughter would love it, but my son was on the edge of his seat.'" (Canons, battle scenes and the chance to make nut-cracking jokes all night - what boy wouldn't be in heaven?) Besides elaborate lighting and scenery, the company also charms with top-notch guest dancers from around the world - and around town. Russians Olga Pavlova and Yevgeni Anfinogenov will star as the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier, while the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts' Raffles Durbin will dance as the Nutcracker. (Stop giggling, boys.) 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Geiger Performing Arts Center, 16713 Ella. For information, call 281-444-9698 or visit www.houstondancetheatre.org. $18.
Sat., Nov. 28, 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 29, 2:30 p.m., 2009