Colorado Ballet’s ‘The Nutcracker’ named Best-Loved Nutcracker in the nation

10th Annual Goldstar National Nutcracker Award Colorado Ballet has won the 10th Annual Goldstar National Nutcracker Award, the only award that honors live performances of the seasonal classic. As winner of the audience-favorite competition, Colorado Ballet takes home “The Nutty” statuette, a cash prize for its education programs, and is named the best-loved Nutcracker in the U.S. The company competed in the largest field of nominees in the award’s history – it beat out over 80 other Nutcracker-themed productions.


“It is truly an honor to have Colorado Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker named as the best-loved Nutcracker in the U.S. this year!” said Artistic Director Gil Boggs. “I’m extremely proud of our dancers, musicians, production team and staff who have worked tirelessly to put on 28 performances this season.”


He added, “Winning this honor proves that even after 56 seasons, our production of The Nutcracker continues to be as popular as ever, enchanting sold-out audiences year after year. We could not do this without the amazing support of our patrons—thank you for voting for our production of The Nutcracker. At Colorado Ballet, we delight in presenting a timeless story filled with tradition, humor and holiday magic!”


Colorado Ballet’s 56th annual production of The Nutcracker features more than 300 costumes, 31 company dancers, 25 studio company dancers, 76 academy dancers, scenery by José Varona and timeless choreography paired with Tchaikovsky’s extraordinary arrangement performed live by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra.


Established in 1961 by Lillian Covillo and Freidann Parker, Colorado Ballet is a non-profit organization celebrating 56 years of presenting world-class classical ballet and superior dance in Denver. Under the direction of Gil Boggs, the ensemble presents more than 50 performances annually. It enhances the cultural life of Colorado through performances of the professional company, training at the Academy, and its Education and Community Engagement programs. 


For 10 years, The Goldstar National Nutcracker Award has been the only nationwide award for live Nutcracker-themed performances, showcasing the astounding quality and variety of Nutcracker productions each year – from classic ballet to hip-hop, burlesque and more. Created by live entertainment ticket seller Goldstar, the competition is based solely on Goldstar purchasers’ post-show ratings to rank Nutcracker productions in order of audience favorite.


“We’ve been encouraging people to show love for their very favorite productions all across the country, and it’s very clear, Colorado Ballet’s Nutcracker is the crowd favorite,” said Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy. “We’d like to congratulate the entire company and crew for their remarkable work.”


Here’s the entire list of winners for the 10 years of The Goldstar National Nutcracker Award: 


2016       Colorado Ballet
: The Nutcracker

2015       The Joffrey Ballet: Robert Joffrey’s The Nutcracker

2014       MBS Productions: The Beulaville Baptist Book Club Presents: A Bur-less-Q Nutcracker!

2013       Debbie Allen Dance Academy: The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker

2012       The Joffrey Ballet: Robert Joffrey’s The Nutcracker

2011       The Joffrey Ballet: Robert Joffrey’s The Nutcracker

2010       Debbie Allen Dance Academy: The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker

2009       Boston Ballet: Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker

2008       Kirov Ballet: The Nutcracker

2007       The House Theater of Chicago: The Nutcracker


For more information on the Goldstar National Nutcracker Award, visit To learn more about Colorado Ballet’s current season, head to


Photo: Artists of Colorado Ballet in The Nutcracker Snow Scene. Photo by Mike Watson.