Archives for December 4, 2017

The Queen Mary’s All-New CHILL Unveils Calendar of International Holiday Celebrations Nightly Entertainment Honors Holidays from Around the Globe


The world-famous Queen Mary invites guests to embark on an international holiday expedition this winter with the unveiling of the all-new CHILL, open December 13, 2017 through January 7, 2018. Featuring the first-ever Ice Adventure Park in the U.S., the newly-inspired CHILL offers a rush of icy family fun with nightly entertainment throughout the park including international cultural celebrations, live music, Rockettes-style dance performances, fireworks, light shows, DJs, dancing, tasty food, a nightly Christmas Tree lighting ceremony and much more.

Experience the 38,000-square foot ice park honoring international holiday celebrations with one-of-a-kind entertainment and traditions of Germany, Switzerland, China, Russia, Holland, and the North Pole. Embark in traditional Chinese entertainment in CHILL’s version of the Forbidden City with nightly performances by Shaolin Monks and experience first-hand the beautiful rhythmic movements of the traditional Lion Dance. CHILL’s Kung Fu Forest will offer fireworks every Sunday night. Glide through the finish line of Shanghai Speedway nightly ($5 add on) on CHILL’s big wheel ice bikes. Saunter down Lantern Lane into the Lucky Bamboo and meet CHILL’s Panda Character for warm bear-hugs and unique selfie opportunities.

Take in the traditions of Germany with a stroll through CHILL’s Munich Market and raise a stein to the nightly live tunes from the authentic Alpine Band. Meet the ethereal Christkindle, the German gift bringer and bearer of lights, and shop traditional holiday trinkets and souvenirs at the nightly festive market. Cozy up in Switzerland’s Alpine Square by roasting marshmallows and building gooey s’mores at the toasty fire pit. Dine in the Alpine Lodge, open nightly, serving traditional Swiss bites overlooking the Matterhorn Mountain tubing slide and meet the gift bearer of the Alps, Sinterklaas, for photos and celebrations of the Twelfth Night.

Show off your best grooves as the DJ spins today’s top hits at the Russian Disco in CHILL’s Blizzard Boulevard. Experience the magic of the Northern Lights Show offered nightly at the Aurora Borealis Light show and meet the gift bringers of Russia, Father Frost and The Princess. Holland’s Windmill Way will offer nightly performances on the Illumination stage with hourly performances by Rockettes-style dancers and a nightly tree lighting ceremony. Meet the magical Father Time, Holland’s gift bearer who will share interesting facts on stargazing and how the Dutch discovered the telescope. Skate over to America’s North Pole for a visit and photo with Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus. Visit the Candy Bar to grab sweet treats for the little ones, and liquid candy sips for the adults.

The all-new CHILL also offers an opportunity to experience international fare. Tempt your taste buds with beverages and bites from around the globe including Germany’s Twisted Pretzel and Tasting Tavern and the Brat Haus. Pay tribute to Swiss delicacies with a visit to the Zurich Deli, the Fondue Pot, and the Alpine Lodge’s restaurant: Chateau Bar. Sip on traditional teas in China’s Zen Teahouse and the Hot Pot. Then warm up in the Russian Pierogi Paradise or the Stroganoff and Stew Pot. Curb your sweet tooth with gourmet donuts, make-your-own Gingerbread house or visit the Fire Pit to make holiday s‘mores.

CHILL pricing starts at $29.00 for adults (ages 9+) and $19.00 for kids. VIP Ultimate Expedition tickets are also available starting at $79.00 for adults (ages 9+) and $69.00 for kids. CHILL will run Dec. 13, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018, excluding Dec. 31, 2017. For more information, including an entertainment schedule, hours of operation and to purchase tickets online, visit

Credit: The Queen Mary. 

‘The Nutcracker’ Inland Pacific Ballet’s Spectacular with over 80 dancers returns to Claremont, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside

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Inland Pacific Ballet Presents

The Nutcracker

A Holiday Tradition Returns to the Inland Empire 
Performances in three theaters between December 9 – December 23, 2017
Claremont, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside

 Enjoy a treasured holiday tradition with family and friends at Southern California’s most spectacular production of The Nutcracker from critically acclaimed Inland Pacific Ballet. The Nutcracker comes to life in this magnificent ballet comprised of beautiful sets, dazzling costumes, and more than 80 dancers on stage with a total of 10 performances from December 9-23 at three theatres – Bridges Auditorium, Pomona College in ClaremontLewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga, and the Fox Performing Arts Center in Riverside. This annual holiday show tells the story of a young girl named Clara who receives a magical nutcracker doll on Christmas Eve and sets out on a wondrous journey to the Land of the Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets. Featuring toy soldiers, life-sized dancing dolls, falling snow, a fantastic dream with battling mice, dancing snowflakes, waltzing flowers, new Gingerbread characters in an updated choreographed Mother Ginger scene, Tchaikovsky’s classic score, and the delightful Sugar Plum Fairy that stirs the imagination. Young audience members can look forward to meeting and greeting the cast after the performance for photos and autographs.

Returning Principal Dancers include Allynne Noelle as the Sugar Plum Fairy with Thomas Garrett and Evan Swenson as the Cavalier, Cameron Schwanz as Arabian, Jonathan Sharp as Drosselmeyer, and Reece Taylor as Mouse King and Arabian. Principal Character Artist Brandon J will perform as Mouse King and Dragon Master. Soloists Michael Milligan will dance the roles of Dr. Stahlbaum and Dragon Master with Hannah Leah Oeding as Snow Queen and Spanish, and Chanel Tekin as Arabian and Spanish.

New Principal Dancers include Madison Morris, a southern California native recently returned from dancing with Houston Ballet, who with her warm and expansive performing style will grace the roles of Dew Drop, Snow Queen and Mrs. Stahlbaum. Gracie Holway, a tall, exquisite, dancer who hails from Michigan will dance the Sugar Plum Fairy, among other roles, and Jessica Gadzinski, whose elegance and inner passion make her a perfect interpreter for the Arabian Princess, and Dew Drop roles.

IPB’s two new soloists are Kelsey Dorr from Lake Forest in Orange County, who among other roles will dance a Rose in Waltz of the Flowers, and Lawrence Chen, a brilliant young artist from Chino Hills who is also currently pursuing his interest in mathematics at Pomona College. With his power, athleticism and grace, Lawrence will be dancing The Nutcracker Prince, the Spanish, Russian, and the Soldier Doll.

“We are always excited to share our beautiful production of the Nutcracker with loyal fans and new audiences,” states Artistic Director Victoria Koenig, “and this year we are thrilled to introduce five outstanding new dancers who have just joined the Company. You don’t want to miss these inspiring dancers who all bring fresh and unique qualities to their roles. Their enthusiasm is infectious!”

The Nutcracker has become the most popular ballet of our times. It was first presented in 1892 at the Maryinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, Russia. The ballet was an adaptation of the 1816 story by E. T. A. Hoffman, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King. The Nutcracker was choreographed by Lev Ivanov with music by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Marius Petipa, the reigning choreographer at the Maryinsky, fell ill, so the job passed to Ivanov. Tchaikovsky only reluctantly accepted the commission to compose the score which, when completed, he considered “infinitely worse than ‘Sleeping Beauty’.” At the premiere, the ballet was deemed a complete failure. More than 60 years and many productions would pass before The Nutcracker would become a staple of the repertoire in ballet companies around the world and one of the universal traditions of the holiday season.

Children’s Tickets for IPB’s The Nutcracker start at $23, senior tickets start at $38 and adult tickets start at $41 with premium seats at $59. Performances take place from December 9/10 at 2pm and December 9 at 7:30 pm at Bridges Auditorium, Pomona College in Claremont; December 15/16 at 7:30 pm and December 16/17 at 2 pm at Lewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga; and December 22/23 at 7:30 pm and December 23 at 2 pm at the Fox Performing Arts Center in Riverside.

Inland Pacific Ballet’s educational outreach program, “A Young Person’s Guide to the Ballet,” is back this season with five additional abbreviated performances of The Nutcracker for PreK-12 students from local area schools that include a talk and demonstration showing the magic of live theater and how dancers tell a story without words. Students are encouraged to participate in simple movement activities in their seats and then view the lavish professional ballet performance, followed by a lively question and answer session. Teachers also have access to a free Study Guide to continue the experience back in the classroom with pre- and post-performance activities aligned through the California State Content Standards for Dance, California Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and the California English Language Development Standards. For many of these students, this will be the first time they get to experience live performance art, being in a theater, and learning about ballet. Information about outreach performances are available at

Inland Pacific Ballet, is a professional ballet company based in the Inland Empire region of Southern California. The Company is committed to producing exquisitely staged productions of full-length classic story ballets as well as presenting the best in contemporary choreography. Through creative marketing and an extensive Educational Outreach Program, Inland Pacific Ballet strives to introduce new audiences to the magic of ballet, and to make the experience more available and accessible to all. The Company is also committed to the nurturing of new talent and provides an essential training ground for serious young dancers

Over the past 23 years Inland Pacific Ballet’s Founders/Directors, Southern California natives Victoria Koenig and Kevin Frank Myers, have built Inland Pacific Ballet into the premier ballet company in the region, enjoying critical acclaim while performing the largest and most varied repertoire in the area. The Company’s repertoire includes such classics as A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Les Sylphides, Graduation Ball and Swan Lake Act II. Full length classical masterpieces include Giselle, Coppélia and a lavish production of The Nutcracker. Contemporary classics include seminal works by the legendary George Balanchine including Serenade, Concerto Barocco and Who Cares? and a growing body of original work that includes creative adaptations of much loved stories such as The Little Mermaid, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast and Dracula.

Victoria Koenig
 – co-founder and Artistic Director – is a native of Los Angeles where she trained with Carmelita Maracci, Kenneth Kreel, Tania Riaboushinska Lichine and Stanley Holden.  After many years as a professional dancer in such notable companies as the Feld Ballet, New York and extensive international travel as a guest artist and teacher for cultural institutions such as Taiwan’s National Institute of the Arts and Artemis Dance Concentrum in Amsterdam, she returned to Southern California and has become a shaping force in the region’s dance community.  In Los Angeles she co-founded the Los Angeles Chamber Ballet, a critically acclaimed contemporary ballet company known for its creativity and originality.  For eight years she was on the faculty of the Stanley Holden Dance Center where she taught the professional level class attended by local pros as well as visiting artists from companies around the world.  She also served for six years on the dance faculty of California State University, Long Beach.  Now a resident of Claremont, Victoria has brought her many years of professional experience to the Inland Valley as Co-Founder and Artistic Director of both the Inland Pacific Ballet and the Company’s official Academy, which provides unique training and performance opportunities for the region’s serious young dance artists.  She also serves the community as a grant review panelist for State and local arts agencies including the California Arts Council and the Los Angeles City Cultural Affairs Department.  Victoria is also a member of the dance faculty at Pomona College.

Kevin Frank Myers
 – co-founder and Co-Director – is a native of Riverside, California.  He danced with the Houston Ballet in solo roles in the classic repertoire including GiselleSwan LakeThe Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty and in work created on him by Houston Ballet’s renowned Artistic Director, Ben Stevenson.  Later as soloist with the Los Angeles Ballet, he danced principal roles in a variety of Balanchine ballets, including Tarantella and Jewels.  As a Co-Founder and Associate Director of Inland Pacific Ballet and of the Inland Pacific Ballet Academy, Kevin is fulfilling a dream of widening the opportunities for the young people of the Inland Empire to experience the art of ballet and providing local talent with the chance to pursue a career in the field.

Jonathan Sharp – Associate Director – was trained at the National Academy of the Arts and the School of American Ballet, the official school of the New York City Ballet. While on full scholarship at SAB, he was trained by master teachers Stanley Williams, Peter Martins, Andrea Kramarevsky, Suzanne Farrell, Alexandra Danilova, Suki Schorer, and Sean Lavery. After finishing his training there, he danced professionally with the Boston Ballet and the Pennsylvania Ballet. He was also a member of Stars of America Ballet (a touring group headlined by Robert La Fosse and Darci Kistler). He returned to NYC and appeared in the original casts of five Broadway shows: The Red Shoes, Carousel (1994 Tony winner for Best Revival), The Rocky Horror Show Live, The Dance of the Vampires and Fiddler on the Roof. He has also appeared on television as a contract player in the daytime drama Another World, as well as guest-starring on Law and Order and Gilmore Girls. Jonathan is a faculty member of Idyllwild Arts Academy and also teaches and directs all over Southern California. He is an ABT Certified Teacher for Primary to Level 5.

Credit: Inland Pacific Ballet.

Dana Point Harbor Welcomes “A Superhero Holiday” Boat Parade Dec. 8-16 Enjoy free holiday activities, Santa, superheroes, and more by the water's edge

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Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, the County of Orange, OC Parks and Dana Point Harbor invite families to celebrate the season with “A Superhero Holiday” at the 43rd Annual Boat Parade of Lights. Enjoy jolly activities with a superhero twist on select dates December 8-16 by the water’s edge.

The 43rd  Annual Boat Parade of Lights will take place on December 8, 9, 15 and 16 and feature the theme “A Superhero Holiday.” On each evening of the parade, OC Parks will host free family activities throughout Dana Point Harbor including games, crafts, photos and selfies with Santa, superhero encounters and live entertainment. Festivities begin at 4:30 p.m. and the Boat Parade starts at 7:30 p.m.

“Dana Point Harbor will welcome more holiday festivities and entertainment than ever before during the 43rd Annual Boat Parade,” Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, Fifth District, said. “Join us for A Superhero Holiday and enjoy free, family-friendly activities that culminate each night with the spectacular Boat Parade.”

The young and the young at heart are encouraged to dress as their favorite superheroes during the Boat Parade. Everyday heroes, including first responders and military, will be collecting unwrapped toy donations for Operation Santa Claus under the corridor of lights at the pergola. Donations will also be accepted at businesses throughout the harbor.

Free trolleys for each night of the Boat Parade will be running from 3:30 to 10:30 p.m. and will be dropping off and picking up along Dana Point Harbor Drive at Doheny State Beach, The Visitor’s Center, Ocean Institute, Baby Beach, Island Way, Retail Area and back to Doheny.

The holiday season kicks off with Merry Movie Night at Baby Beach on Saturday, December 2 and will feature the holiday favorite film, “Elf.” Festive activities begin at 3:30 p.m., movie begins around 5:15 p.m.; event is free and food and drink will be available for purchase.

Sail through the harbor in holiday spirit during Boat Rides with Santa on Saturday, December 2 and Sunday, December 3 from 10 a.m. – 2. p.m; rides launch from Dana Wharf Sportfishing.

Saturday, December 2 also welcomes Santa Paws for festive photos with the furry friends in your life from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the El Torito Courtyard.

Celebrate the holiday season at the spectacular 43rd annual Boat Parade of Lights at Dana Point Harbor. For more information on the evening’s festivities, visit

Credit: OC Parks.

Burke Williams Holiday Gift Card Packages Available Through 12.31 Give the Gift of Relaxation this Holiday Season

Give the gift of relaxation and renewal this holiday season with Burke Williams Holiday Gift Card Packages. Four special packages will allow those on your holiday list to indulge in world-class amenities and choose from a full menu of signature services that will transport them from the stress of everyday life. Each Holiday Gift Card Package purchased includes a bonus gift card and the coveted 3-Day Spa Pass, which gives guests three complimentary visits to any Burke Williams location and 20% off services booked the same day. “Escape” the stresses of everyday life for $150 – $249 and receive a $50 bonus gift card. “Transform” someone’s day for $250-$399 and receive a $100 gift card or let your friends and family “Indulge” in the luxuries of Burke Williams for $400-$499 and receive at $150 gift card. Give the “Ultimate” gift of relaxation for $650-$749 and receive a bonus $250 gift card. Spread the holiday cheer to your valued employees and co-workers with Corporate Holiday Gift Cards  for every five gift cards purchased, receive one free gift card of equal value or equal service.


Holiday Gift Card Packages: November 24 – December 31

Promotion available at all 10 Burke Williams Day Spas across California. For more information on services and spa locations or to purchase a gift visit


To schedule a service at Burke Williams Day Spa call 1-866-BEYOND-5 or visit

Credit: Burke Williams Day Spa.

Affectionate Young Couple Giving Present at Christmas