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 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.
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.
- How Tchaikovsky used the orchestra to create unrivalled ballet scores
- Choreographer Peter Wright on what makes The Nutcracker so magical
- Cracking the codes: The meaning of mime in ballet
- Our highlight: What makes the Dance of the Snowflakes tick
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.