‘Nutcrackers’ and other holiday shows in NYC

The Colonial Nutcracker in New York‘Tis the season for Nutcracker productions to be in full swing! And New York is perhaps the biggest hot spot to find these shows! Here are a few Nutcracker productions currently being presented in the Big Apple, as well as one other interesting holiday favorite, in case you find yourself in the City that Never Sleeps this month.


– Running now through January 3, New York City Ballet’s annual holiday production, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, is being presented in the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. With over 200 performers, a one-ton Christmas tree that magically grows from 12 to 40 feet, hundreds of dazzling costumes, and a million watts of illuminated excitement, it’s no wonder the New York Post praises this Nutcracker as “the Christmas show of all Christmas shows.”


– New York Theatre Ballet will perform Keith Michael’s The Nutcracker from December 11-13 at Florence Gould Hall. Returning for the fifth year, this one-hour ballet is perfect for ages 3 and up. From clockwork imps to a luminous owl that flies above the audience, mice dressed in polka dots and dancers moving with huge chopsticks, this timeless re-imagined classic bursts with energy and excitement. Danced to Tchaikovsky’s beloved score, it is set in Art Nouveau style circa 1907, featuring set design by Gillian Bradshaw-Smith and costumes by Metropolitan Opera’s Resident Costume Designer Sylvia Taalsohn Nolan.


New York Theatre Ballet in Keith Michael's Nutcracker– Marking its 20th anniversary, The Yorkville Nutcracker will once again be presented by Dances Patrelle this season. Set for December 10-13 at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College, the production takes the audience on a tour through Olde New York’s most beloved landmarks, including a holiday party at Gracie Mansion, dancing at the Crystal Palace in the New York Botanical Garden, and skating in Central Park. Set in 1895, The Yorkville Nutcracker features lavish sets and costumes. This year, Abi Stafford and Adrian Danchig-Waring, both principal dancers with New York City Ballet, return as the Sugar Plum and Cavalier. Other dancers include John-Mark Owen and Julie Voshell dancing the Arabian Divertissement and Matthew Dibble, Justin Peck, Therese Wendler and Nadezhda Vostrikov alternating as the Snow King and Queen.


Dances PatrelleThe Colonial Nutcracker returns to the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College on Sunday, December 13 at 2 p.m. Created especially for families with children ages 5-10, The Colonial Nutcracker sets Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet in wintry colonial Yorktown during the Revolutionary War. Rose Menes’ delightful staging and choreography, coupled with colorful costumes and Tchaikovsky’s enduring score, will captivate audiences of all ages.


– Another holiday production taking place at the Brooklyn Center on Sunday, December 20 that’s unique and truly one-of-a-kind is The Snow Maiden (Снегурочка.) Performed with English subtitles, this is the magical Russian Christmas version of the Cinderella story. Grandfather Frost (the Russian Santa Claus) transforms a poor young girl into the beautiful Snow Maiden after proving her worthiness. This delightful children’s extravaganza incorporates traditional Russian songs, dances and elaborate costumes to create a winter wonderland. At the end of the performance, every child in the audience will receive a Christmas candy gift box.


Photo (top): The Colonial Nutcracker. Photo courtesy of Dance Theatre in Westchester. Photo (left): New York Theatre Ballet in Keith Michael’s The Nutcracker. Photo by Julieta Cervantes. Photo (right): Dancer in The Yorkville Nutcracker. Photo courtesy of Dances Patrelle.