Alice’s New Wonderland: A Belly Dance Play

Take a leap down the rabbit hole to experience a Wonderland like never before.

“If I had a world of my own,” Alice muses, “everything would be nonsense.” For nearly a century, Alice’s fantastical romp through a world of nonsense named Wonderland has been recreated in films, rock musicals, puppet shows and the like. Christina McKie and the Columbia City Theater have teamed up to bring Seattle a unique production of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” that would astound Alice herself.

Meet “Wonderland: A Belly Dance Play” – Alice’s new Wonderland, if you will. This Wonderland is still a mad whirlwind of talking flowers, rabbits in waistcoats, crazed Mad Hatters, and a Cheshire Cat with luminescent teeth.  Writer/director Mckie — who performs as The Mad Hatter in the show — wanted to take the story a step further by blending the familiar “Alice” characters into an unconventional theater and belly dance performance. Seattle videographer An Magi also produced a video to play alongside this loose adaptation of the 1865 novel and 1951 Disney animated film, in order to explain the plot and improve the overall aesthetic.

“Belly dance is a beautiful art form,” said McKie, “and has become so diverse and so infused with other dance genres such as tango, hip hop, ballet, etc.  I wanted to create a belly dance show that was far more than just a belly dance show and I thought this would be a great avenue to showcase that.”

Each Seattle-based belly dancer was carefully hand-picked by a small group of producers, performers, and teachers like Janine Pierce (aka Miss J9 Pierce), who helped McKie cast this talented group. According to Pierce, this stunning new vision of Wonderland showcases the local talent of the bustling underground cabaret (belly dancing) scene.

“Each performer was given the opportunity to choose their own music and interpret their own part by creating their own choreography,” said Pierce.  “I am seriously excited to work under the direction of McKie and alongside such an amazing group of performers.  We are very lucky to have such a talented, professional and supportive bunch of creative belly dancers in this city.”

Although McKie wrote the play as a family-friendly show, the Columbia City Theater is a 21 and older venue.  But fear not: “We have plans to perform at other venues that are for all ages in the future,” said Pierce.

“Wonderland: A Belly Dance Play” will be presented at the Columbia City Theater on Sunday, Nov. 20 (show begins at 7 p.m.). Tickets ($15) are available online.