Choice: The critics

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The Independent Culture
DANCE

Celebrated American choreographer Twyla Tharp's eagerly awaited first work with the Royal Ballet opens tomorrow at Covent Garden. Mr Worldlywise is based on the colourful life of Rossini and is set to his music. Tharp (right, with Leanne Benjamin) has made full use of the diverse talents of Darcey Bussell, Irek Mukhamedov and Tetsuya Kumakawa in the starring roles. Royal Opera House, London WC2

Northern Ballet Theatre are reviving Christopher Gable's popular production of A Christmas Carol, an all-singing, all-dancing Dickensian extravaganza. What it lacks in serious choreography it makes up for in Christmas spirit. Sheffield Lyceum, 12-16 Dec

Birmingham Royal Ballet's sumptuous Nutcracker has a week to run (ends 16 Dec) at Birmingham Hippodrome. Sir Peter Wright's production is a judicious mix of pure classicism and family outing, and abounds with giant rats and sugar plums.

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