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Catch The Royal Ballet's The Nutcracker live in cinema near you on 5 December 2017

The classic Christmas production will be relayed to audiences around the world.

By Chris Shipman (Head of Brand Engagement and Social Media)

1 December 2017 at 10.28am | 19 Comments

The Royal Ballet's Christmas classic The Nutcracker will be relayed live to cinemas around the world on 5 December 2017.

With its festive period setting, dancing snowflakes and enchanting stage magic, Lev Ivanov’s 1892 ballet has become the perfect Christmas entertainment, with Tchaikovsky’s sumptuous, sugar-spun music the most recognizable of all ballet scores. Peter Wright’s nigh-on definitive production for The Royal Ballet ranks as one of the most enduring and enchanting versions around.

To enhance your viewing experience, access our Nutcracker Digital Programme for free using the promo code FREENUT, and enjoy a range of specially selected films, articles, pictures and features to bring you closer to the production.

The story

The Nutcracker tells the story of Clara, who creeps downstairs on Christmas Eve to play with her favourite present – a Nutcracker doll. Magic is in the air, however, and she's soon whisked off on an adventure to faraway lands of sweets and snowflakes.

Read more:

The choreography and music

The Nutcracker contains some of the most iconic ballet music ever written. But as traditional as it sounds more than a century after its premiere, the score was revolutionary in its time due to the use of an entirely new instrument – the icy celesta which performs the best-known part of the score: the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.

But as impressive as it is sonically, the production is a feast for the eyes too through choreographer Peter Wright's reinterpretation of Ivanov's original steps. 'I was always moved by the classics,' he says, 'And I found I loved re-making some of these scenes. I wanted each step to connect with the audience.’

As well as technical footwork, The Nutcracker also draws on the grand classical ballet tradition of mime to drive forward the action.

Read more:

The cast

The live cinema relay will feature a star-studded cast with Francesca Hayward dancing the role of Clara alongside Alexander Campbell as The Nutcracker. The iconic role of the Sugar Plum Fairy will be danced by Sarah Lamb, while the role of her Prince will be performed by Steven McRae. Gary Avis will dance the role of the magician Drosselmeyer.

The Nutcracker will be relayed live to cinemas around the world on 5 November. Find your nearest cinema and sign up to our mailing list.

By Chris Shipman (Head of Brand Engagement and Social Media)

1 December 2017 at 10.28am

This article has been categorised Ballet and tagged Ballet, Christmas, cinema, cinema broadcast, Cinema relay, Production, The Nutcracker, The Royal Ballet

This article has 19 comments

  1. Alex responded on 1 December 2017 at 7:45pm Reply

    Who is dancing the Rose Fairy please? Can you publish a full cast list.

    • Chris Shipman (Head of Brand Engagement and Social Media) responded on 5 December 2017 at 4:28pm

      Hi Alex,

      The role of the Rose Fairy in tonight's performance will be danced by Yasmine Naghdi

      Best wishes,


  2. Alex responded on 5 December 2017 at 12:48pm Reply

    I'd appreciate if you could answer my question please. Thank you.

  3. Thank you for a fantastic show! I loved it. Who was presenting with Darcy this evening- please?

    • Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media)) responded on 6 December 2017 at 10:29am


      The other presenter was Petroc Trelawny, who presents on BBC Radio 3. So glad you enjoyed the performance.

      Many thanks,


  4. Michele Zadek responded on 6 December 2017 at 11:09am Reply

    Will there be an encore in cinemas and if so wen

  5. Happy days responded on 6 December 2017 at 1:50pm Reply

    Is the nutcracker encore a replay of the one filmed on the 5th of December 2017 or is it a different cast?

    • Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media)) responded on 6 December 2017 at 3:25pm


      The Encore screening is a replay of the same performance screened last night.

      Many thanks,


  6. I have missed this performance. Thanks for sharing these video. The awesome performance they have done that I can see in this videos. Thumbs up!

  7. D Warwick responded on 7 December 2017 at 9:55am Reply

    I understand there is to be a DVD of this performance. Am I right? If so, when will it be available & where might I buy it?

  8. David Wilson responded on 7 December 2017 at 3:44pm Reply

    Did the mouse king come up from below stage on 5 December? I seemed to have missed it.

  9. Clery responded on 12 December 2017 at 9:48am Reply

    According to Steven McCrae's tweet there's to be an encore of screenings of the Nutcracker. When and where please?

    • Chris Shipman (Head of Brand Engagement and Social Media) responded on 12 December 2017 at 3:18pm

      Thanks for your comment.

      You can find your nearest Encore performance-screening cinema at

      Best wishes,


    • Lloyd Perry (Cinema Account Officer) responded on 13 December 2017 at 12:23pm

      Dear Claudia,

      Thank you for getting in touch.

      'The Nutcracker' will still be screened in a number of cinemas throughout the UK on various dates, depending on the venue. Please follow the link below to search for cinemas near your desired viewing location(s), and their screening dates and times.

      Best regards,
      ROH Cinema Team

  10. Ellen Grasmehr responded on 25 December 2017 at 7:45pm Reply

    A absolutely wonderful performance of the Nutcracker live in the cinema's. Went 3 times...Yes. One live and two encores.
    Francesca Hayward makes a lovely and beautiful Clara, such a joy to watch. Drosselmeyer is splendid, I absolutely adore Gary Avis! He is just about the nicest Drosselmeyer I ever saw. His expressions are just extrordinary.
    The Sugar Plum Fairy , their breath-taking pas-de-deux, the costumes, the wonderful conductor, everything. More then enjoyed it. Seeing live right in front of you... 3 times....words cannot descibe it. Thank you ROH!

  11. Clare Jennings responded on 8 January 2018 at 10:15am Reply

    Hi there,

    Is this version (with Sarah Lamb as the Sugar Plum Fairy) available for purchase on DVD? And, per chance, is it available in any of your box sets?

    Thanks in advance. Absolutely loved seeing this in New Zealand today! Francesca Hayward is magical as Clara.

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