Four ways to put a spring in your step

As we make our way toward the end of the year and the holidays that come with it, let’s not be beaten down by the bitter cold and the long dark nights.

Here are four events that will either have you doing pirouettes, reconsidering tap classes, or just bent over with laughter.

1. Buckets and Tap Shoes

Brothers Rick and Andy Ausland are at the heart of this rhythm driven tap ensemble that takes the genre to new hipster heights. Performances run Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Cowles Center.

2. Dance Revolutions

Some people may pooh-pooh student performances, but they’re missing out on some high quality work. The University of Minnesota’s dance department faculty includes some of the best choreographers in town including, among others, Ananya Chatterjea and Uri Sands. You can see their latest work performed by dancers in their prime this weekend.

3. Nutcracker: The Lost Act

Marie runs away and gets hit by a car/The “Land Of Sweets” has never been so bizarre

Ballet of the Dolls, the same company that brought you “Nutcracker: Not so Suite” (starring Ken and Barbie) is back with a new twist on the classic. This time the performance is infused with that “joie-de-vivre” that only a burlesque cabaret can provide. Performances run through December 31 at the Ritz Theater.

4. The Santaland Diaries

Does all the holiday shopping and marketing send you over the edge? Then maybe you need to spend some quality time with Crumpet the Elf. Frank Theatre has brought back its holiday hit from last year, based on the NPR commentaries that launched David Sedaris’ career. If you can’t hear it from David himself, than actor Joe Leary is your man. Performances run December 30 at The Woman’s Club of Minneapolis.

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Joe Leary as Crumpet the Elf

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