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The Voice of the Black Community

Arts and Entertainment

Kurtis Blow wants you to know this is Christmas rappin’
Hip hop legend emcees 'The Hip Hop Nutcracker'
 
Published Wednesday, November 15, 2017 9:08 pm
by Ashley Mahoney

Hip hip pioneer Kurtis Blow, whose 1979 hit “Christmas Rappin’” is one of his best-known records, will emcee “The Hip Hop Nutcracker” Dec. 27-30 at Blumenthal Performing Arts.

Kurtis Blow is still the Christmas rapper.


Thirty-eight years since the release of his holiday hit“Christmas Rappin’,” Blow still entertains the holiday soul.

“It just talks about Christmas and the spirit that’s in the air, and how Santa Claus comes to a poor home on Christmas Eve to give out presents,” Blow said. “He comes down the chimney, and there’s a party going on. He joins in with the party, and starts dancing and hanging out. Then he leaves, but he gives presents out to everyone. That’s ‘Christmas Rappin’.’  I’m known as the Christmas rapper.”

The holiday season remains his favorite time of year.

“We all know that the real meaning of Christmas, and that joy and that love that’s in the air—that magic—all comes from the birth of Christ,” Blow said. “That’s what it means to us. It’s the birth of Christ. This is my favorite holiday.”

As the emcee of “The Hip Hop Nutcracker,” which Blumenthal Performing Arts presents Dec. 27-30 at Knight Theater, Blow sets the stage for contemporary dance to set to Tchaikovsky’s classic score.

“When you think about the early days of hip hop in the early 1970s and the early 1980s, and just having a good time, that’s what the early days of hip hop were about,” Blow said. “It wasn’t about the money, violence, disrespecting each other, and the things that we say. It was more about coming to a party, and having a good time. That time is similar to the original play. Just taking the holiday season—the spirit of love is in the air. Giving back and giving thanks to all of your friends and family who have put up with you throughout the year. Just giving thanks to God for being able to open up your eyes on Christmas morning and give a present. That whole spirit is the same spirit from when we started hip hop, and Tchaikovsky’s work. We bring it home when we talk about the spirit of the original and what we need today.”  

Co-creator, director and choreographer Jennifer Weber illustrates a contemporary spin on the holiday classic, taking the audience from a contemporary setting to a holiday party in the 1980s in Brooklyn. Buckle up, and prepare to travel back in time.


“I love the part when the Nutcracker gets a pair of shoes that have magic in them,” Blow said. “He takes these shoes, and he defeats evil with the magic in these shoes. That’s the whole theme of the play—the magic of love that’s all around the holiday season, this energy, this magic, you can accomplish anything with that. Love is the answer to all of our problems.”   

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