When you hear mention of “The Nutcracker,” your mind may instantly conjure up the new “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” movie. Rather than take a risk on what’s (so far) shaping up to be a rather lackluster movie, treat yourself and your family to a new, transcendent onstage performance of the classic production from the talented Atlanta Ballet at the historic Fox Theatre this December.
The Original History of The Nutcracker
You’ve undoubtedly heard “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” from “The Nutcracker Suite,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve seen it performed live on stage, or that you know the full story behind The Nutcracker. The Atlanta Ballet draws inspiration from the original source material from E.T.A. Hoffman’s “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” from 1816.
Darker than the fantasy fare presented by Alexandre Dumas, Hoffman’s version tells the story of Maria and the nutcracker given to her by her grandfather. When the gift breaks, Maria slips out of bed in the middle of the night to find Nutcracker has taken on a life of his own and acts as the commander of a legion of toy soldiers in a battle against the Mouse King. While Maria and the Nutcracker manage to defeat the rodent antagonist, it’s only the beginning of their adventures.
A Premiere Show Presented by a Premier Dance Company
Our state has the distinct privilege and pleasure of being the home of one of the US’s premier dance companies, the Atlanta Ballet. The history of the dance company stretches back to its original founding in 1929. Since then, the Atlanta Ballet has been recognized for its commitment to delighting and educating audiences about the expression and joy of dance. Besides well-known classics, the dance company is regarded for its original performances. Blending a bit of the old with the new, the Atlanta Ballet will present a never-before-seen production of “The Nutcracker” at the Fox Theatre.
An Elevation Celebration for the Opening Night Gala
While you’ll have plenty of opportunities to experience the Atlanta Ballet perform the classic during December, you’ll only have one chance to attend the opening night gala on December 8th. Don your sharpest attire and start what’s bound to be an unforgettable evening at a cocktail reception in the Grand Salon followed by dinner prepared by Affairs to Remember in the Egyptian Ballroom, all highlighted by European decor arranged by Tony Brewer & Co.
Keep the night going after the performance at the afterparty, The Nutcracker Act II. There, you’ll be treated to an open bar, small dishes, and more dances from the Atlanta Ballet.
The Offstage Dramatis Personae
With all the excitement taking place on the stage, the two years’ worth of hard work and dedication poured in behind the scenes cannot be overlooked. Audiences can thank Atlanta Ballet artistic director Gennadi Nedvigin for assembling a talented team of professionals to create an artistic milestone. Yuri Possokhov serves as the company’s world-class choreographer, and Tony-Award-winner Tom Pye acts as the production’s set designer.
Video projection design is helmed by another Tony Award winner, Finn Ross, while Sandra Woodall is the woman responsible for the brand-new costume designs. The performers and stage are expertly lit by lighting designer David Finn.
The Fox Theatre
You should also know the history housed in the Fox Theatre, which has been designated as a National Historic Landmark. The theater originally opened its doors in 1929 on Christmas Day as one of the biggest movie theaters ever constructed. Currently, it remains as one of the country’s most ornate theaters, and one of the busiest of its kind. After you’ve caught your breath from “The Nutcracker,” know that you’ll have more than 150 other performances to experience throughout the new year.
You can catch “The Nutcracker” performed by the Atlanta Ballet from the opening gala on December 8th to its final show on December 24th. Head over to AtlantaBallet.com/Nutcracker for tickets.