Thank you to Walt Disney Studios for inviting me on an all-expenses-paid trip to cover #DisneysNutcrackerEvent. All opinions and genuine excitement over Disney’s the Nutcracker and the Four Realms and interviewing Mackenzie Foy, Misty Copeland and Jim Cummings are my own.
Someone, please pinch me! This ballerina mom is going to LA this weekend to attend Disney’s the Nutcracker and the Four Realms press event. What? Yes!
You all know I’m a long time Disney lover. I married a Big Guy who has a hidden Mickey tattooed on him. We honeymooned at Disney World and we’ve seen every Disney movie ever, especially since having our baby girls. So many Disney themed birthday parties have been had. So many Disney memories and now, my worlds collide.
There is only one thing I love almost as much as Disney and that is ballet. My girls have been dancing since they were 2. I’ve sat through countless hours of classes, driven to hundreds of hours of rehearsals and attended so many Nutcracker performances, my heart swelling with pride as my tiny dancers arabesqued, pirouetted and leaped across the stage. I’ve stayed up late nights sewing pointe shoes until my fingers bled and the Big Guy and I have both perfected the ballet bun.
Both of my girls have danced in the Nutcracker since they were 5-years-old. The Big Guy and I have been working backstage with tiny dancers and being a part of the Nutcracker magic every year. This is our family’s holiday tradition. My oldest has actually never gotten to see the Nutcracker live because she’s always performing on stage. This is why my family is so excited about Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. We will finally get to see the story unfold together; all four of us.
I won’t lie, I nearly fainted when I got the pixie-dusted email. I read it about 3 times before I could convince myself that it was, in fact, real and I was being invited to the world premiere of Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms and would be attending #DisneysNutcrackerEvent. My mind was swirling. I felt like Clara getting to meet the Sugar Plum Fairy.
Sunday, I’m heading to Los Angeles at 8 am for Disney’s Nutcracker World Premiere event and I don’t think I could be more excited if I tried. Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms hits theatres everywhere November 2nd and you can bet, I’ll be at the theater watching it with my family.
The imagery is stunning with a star-studded cast including Misty Copeland, Mackenzie Foy, Keira Knightly, Helen Mirren and Morgan Freeman (to name a few). I’m going to really have to keep my inner fangirl in check on the red carpet but expect lots of updates and photos from the event. Who knows what might happen? At this point, I believe anything can happen because obviously, dreams do come true!
READ ALSO: The Nutcracker’s Tiniest Soldier
Keep reading to find out all the activities, interviews and more that I will be sharing during #DisneysNutcrackerEvent. Follow the hashtag 10/28-10/30 for all the Disney the Nutcracker and the Four Realms splendor that I can share.
But there is more! Yes, more. As if it’s not exciting enough just to have the honor of attending the world premiere ( I feel like a celebrity every time I tell anyone about it;) ) there is so much more. First off, I get to learn a few sweet The Nutcracker and the Four Realms inspired dance moves.
That’s right! Sunday night, I’m going to be getting a dance lesson with teachers and DANCING WITH THE STARS / DANCING WITH THE STARS: JUNIORS mentors Brandon Armstrong, Alan Bersten & Gleb Savchenko. What? Yes, you read that right! I’ll make sure to share the whole thing with you. Fingers crossed my two left feet are so excited to be at the Nutcracker and the Four Realms event, they forget they have no rhythm.
Have you seen the new Disney’s Christopher Robin movie? It comes out on Digital and Blu-ray™ Nov. 6. Embark on a spirited adventure with grown-up Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh, and friends, and go behind the scenes to discover how Disney’s beloved characters are brought to life.
In honor of the Blu-ray & Digital release of CHRISTOPHER ROBIN, we will gather with friends in the park and enjoy a delicious “Friendsgiving” meal inspired by Pooh’s favorite thing, hunny!
To celebrate the occasion, we will be interviewing Jim Cummings (voice of “Winnie the Pooh” & “Tigger”), who is one of the most well-known voiceover actors in animation. Even if you don’t recognize the name, you will recognize his voice.
Aside from voicing the beloved characters of Winnie the Pooh and Tigger ( one of my daughter’s favorites) during his illustrious career, he has worked extensively for Walt Disney Studios, voicing classic characters such as Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, King Louis, Kaa the Snake, Pete and many others.
His credits read like a top list of animated and live-action films, including “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin,” “Tarzan,” “Pocahontas,” “The Lion King,” “Babe: Pig in the City,” “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” “Brother Bear 2,” “The Princess and the Frog” and “Gnomeo & Juliet,” to name a few. He has been Emmy®-nominated five times over, as well as had five nominations for the prestigious Annie Awards. All I can say is wow! He’s like animation royalty and I get to interview him.
As if that is not all exciting enough, I get to interview Misty Copeland, “the Ballerina”. You know, no big deal, she was just the first African-American ballet dancer to be promoted to principal dancer in the American Ballet Theater’s 75-year history. No big deal, just my girls’ ballet idol and constant female inspiration.
Misty Copeland didn’t start dancing ballet until she was 13-years-old by the time she was 15, she won first place in the Music Center Spotlight Awards. Through her career, she has been a constant inspiration to little girls everywhere. She gives them hope and confidence to know that with a lot of hard work, determination and passion, you can accomplish your dreams even if you don’t fit the typical mold.
When we found out, my girls were squealing and so excited. They are begging me to sneak them in my carry on.
READ ALSO: Why the Nutcracker Ballet is so Special
I will have the pleasure of interviewing Mackenzie Foy who plays Clara in Disney’s the Nutcracker and the Four Realms. Ms. Foy has quickly emerged as one of Hollywood’s most exciting young actresses. With a breakout role in one of the biggest movie franchises of all time, the Twilight Saga, Foy’s body of work continues to evolve with exciting and challenging projects.
She’s starred in Interstellar, The Conjuring, The Little Prince and Plastic Jesus to name a few of the amazing movies you might have seen her in. Ms. Foy is definitely a rising star.
“All Clara (Mackenzie Foy) wants is a key – a one-of-a-kind key that will unlock a box that holds a priceless gift. A golden thread, presented to her at godfather Drosselmeyer’s (Morgan Freeman) annual holiday party, leads her to the coveted key—which promptly disappears into a strange and mysterious parallel world. It’s there that Clara encounters a soldier named Phillip (Jayden Fowora-Knight), a gang of mice and the regents who preside over three Realms: Land of Snowflakes, Land of Flowers and Land of Sweets. Clara and Phillip must brave the ominous Fourth Realm, home to the tyrant Mother Ginger (Helen Mirren), to retrieve Clara’s key and hopefully return harmony to the unstable world. Starring Keira Knightley as the Sugar Plum Fairy, Disney’s new holiday feature film “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” is directed by Lasse Hallström and Joe Johnston, and inspired by E.T.A. Hoffmann’s classic tale.”
Next up, I get to walk my first ever red carpet and see this incredible film that I’ve been waiting to be on the big screen since I saw the first teaser last year. It’s going to be amazing and I cannot wait to take it all in.
THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT behind-the-scenes experience
We get a sneak peek of “The Kids Are Alright,” which airs Tuesdays at 8:30|7:30c on ABC. You can also watch/rewatch via streaming (ABC app/ABC.com/Hulu) or On Demand. This show is so funny and clever.
Set in the 1970s, this ensemble comedy follows a traditional Irish-Catholic family, the Clearys, as they navigate big and small changes during one of America’s most turbulent decades. In a working-class neighborhood outside Los Angeles, Mike and Peggy raise eight boisterous boys who live out their days with little supervision. The household is turned upside down when oldest son Lawrence returns home and announces he’s quitting the seminary to go off and “save the world.” Times are changing and this family will never be the same. There are 10 people, three bedrooms, one bathroom and everyone in it for themselves.
The series stars Michael Cudlitz as Mike Cleary, Mary McCormack as Peggy Cleary, Sam Straley as Lawrence Cleary, Caleb Foote as Eddie Cleary, Sawyer Barth as Frank Cleary, Christopher Paul Richards as Joey Cleary, Jack Gore as Timmy Cleary, Andy Walken as William Cleary, and Santino Barnard as Pat Cleary.
STATION 19 behind-the-scenes experience
Behind-the-scenes experience with “Station 19,” starring Jaina Lee Ortiz and Jason George!
“Station 19” airs Thursdays at 9|8c on ABC (also available via streaming on ABC app/ABC.com/Hulu and on demand) follows a group of heroic Seattle firefighters as they put their lives and hearts on the line. The latest series from the executive producers of “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal” and “How to Get Away with Murder” takes us inside the tough, tight-knit and sometimes heartbreaking world of the city’s bravest first responders.
“Station 19” stars Jaina Lee Ortiz as Andy Herrera, Jason George as Ben Warren, Grey Damon as Jack Gibson, Barrett Doss as Victoria Hughes, Alberto Frezza as Ryan Tanner, Jay Hayden as Travis Montgomery, Okieriete Onaodowan as Dean Miller, Danielle Savre as Maya Bishop and Miguel Sandoval as Captain Pruitt Herrera.
Stacy McKee (“Grey’s Anatomy”) serves as showrunner and executive producer, along with Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers. Paris Barclay (“Pitch” and “Sons of Anarchy”) serves as the producing director and executive producer of the series.
Sadly on Tuesday, I fly home and turn back into a pumpkin just in time to take my girls trick-or-treating. I’m so excited for the Disney’s Nutcracker and the Four Realms event that I can barely contain myself.
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