Linda Haberman of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular

The director and choreographer discusses this year's Rockettes holiday tour.

Linda Haberman of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular

Linda Haberman, once a ballerina, trains the Rockettes.

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It’s always holiday season for Linda Haberman, director and choreographer of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular featuring the Rockettes. This year she is leading her troupe of 36 dancers on a 25-city tour with November and December dates in Fresno, Oakland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, and San Jose. For details, go to radiocitychristmas.com.

Q What can we expect on this tour?
A We’ve made the Radio City show even bigger. Our set designer stages concerts for Madonna and the Rolling Stones.

Q The most thrilling part?
A A new number called “New York at Christmas.” Dancers board a giant double-decker bus as it weaves through Manhattan. We put an enormous LED screen behind it so you feel you’re actually on board. It ends in Times Square with a big dance routine and fireworks. It’s pretty amazing.

Q What’s precision dancing?
A For a long time, people thought of it as lines of women tap dancing in formation, but it’s really a whole other art form. Any time you get a large number of people doing the exact same thing at the exact same time, right down to their pinkie fingers, it appeals to us on a very human level.

Q Who gets to be a Rockette?
A Beyond being a great dancer, you have to be tall—between 5'6" and 5'11". You also have to know how to express yourself within the confines of a group. There are plenty of talented dancers who wouldn’t make good Rockettes.

Q Will there ever be a male Rockette?
A Sorry, guys. We’re a female precision dance company.

Photography courtesy Madison Square Garden Entertainment

This article was first published in July 2010. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.

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