What ballet fan or devotee of Christmas traditions doesn't know the story of The Nutcracker? The enchanting tale that begins on Christmas Eve when the girl, Clara, receives a Nutcracker doll from her mysterious godfather Drosselmeyer. The young choreographer Demis Volpi has taken Petipa’s original version of the ballet as starting point, but adds his own interpretation of the music of Tchaikovsky.

The Nutcracker (1892), based on a fairy tale by the German writer E.T.A. Hoffmann, was no easy task. Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa had a real struggle with it. The premiere was even postponed by a year. Initially the critics were unimpressed by the choreography that included 'too few dance moves'. The Nutcracker was first performed in 1892 at the Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, and had a run of just 14 performances.

The premiere in the West was only in 1934 in London, and from there the ballet went on to conquer the world. Everyone was smitten with the adorable Clara and the Nutcracker who, in her dream, comes to life and is transformed into a prince. The suspense runs high when her hero is attacked by the Mouse King. The Nutcracker fights off the army of mice, and then they wind up inside of Drosselmeyer's magic lantern. There, they meet the Snow Queen and the Sugar Plum Fairy, who takes Clara and the prince on a magical journey through exotic lands and marvellous delights… all of which takes place in the unique, fascinating world of the leading contemporary choreographer Demis Volpi.

Length: 2 h, including intermission  

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Demis Volpi
Shaun Amyot
Katharina Schlipf
Ballet Vlaanderen

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In the press

"The Nutcracker with a modern twist"

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