where to watch
From Shondaland, the Netflix documentary film Dance Dreams: Hot Chocolate Nutcracker shines a light on the work of trailblazing icon Debbie Allen and her reimagining of the classic ballet performed annually by the gifted students of the Debbie Allen Dance Academy (DADA). Dance Dreams: Hot Chocolate Nutcracker features intimate interviews with Allen, her family, DADA’s world class dance instructors, and her inspirational students, and provides fascinating insights into Allen’s own personal journey pursuing an art form where she did not always see herself reflected in its imagery. The film also offers front row access to the grueling rehearsals, the passion and leadership of Allen and DADA’s dance instructors, and the huge commitment and undertaking by the dancers of all ages and backgrounds who come to train at the academy each year regardless of their socioeconomic circumstances or traditional expectations of the dance community. Rehearsed for just over three months, The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker has become a staple holiday performance in Los Angeles and the largest fundraising event on the school’s calendar.
Founded in 1991, The Debbie Allen Dance Academy (DADA) is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization committed to expanding the reach of dance and theater arts with the hope of enriching, inspiring and transforming the lives of its students.
“She’s been on Broadway, she’s been in movies, she’s been on television. If there’s something to be done, Debbie has done it. She’s just an extraordinary person and I’m really proud to know her.”– Shonda Rhimes