Boston Ballet presents Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker, voted in 2009 as ‘The Best-Loved Nutcracker in the U.S.’, November 25 – December 31, 2011. State Street is the presenting sponsor of the 2011 production of The Nutcracker. All 40 performances take place at The Boston Opera House, 539 Washington Street, Boston. Boston Ballet and The Nutcracker will make over 30 special appearances at events throughout the community during the holiday season.
This season’s presentation of The Nutcracker marks the final season the current sets and costumes will take the stage. Following this season, the current costumes and sets will be retired and Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker will return to the stage entirely reimagined with new sets and costumes in 2012.
“The final season of this Nutcracker production is a momentous occasion for Boston Ballet, as well as our audiences,” said Nissinen. “For decades, New Englanders have come to Boston to see this very special production of The Nutcracker. For decades, Boston Ballet dancers and Boston Ballet School students have danced this version with artistry and heart. This season will be a special time for all of us to enjoy the magic, pageantry and holiday excitement of this beloved version one last time.”
Boston Ballet’s 2011 production of The Nutcracker features Nissinen’s own choreography, which infuses the classical traditions of Marius Petipa’s The Nutcracker with fresh, neo-classical style giving it a vibrant and energized feel. Every performance is complemented by live music from the full Boston Ballet Orchestra led by Principal Conductor Jonathan McPhee. Nearly 250 Boston Ballet School students from across New England will dance in this year’s production.
2011 is the final year of the production featuring the spectacular sets designed by Helen Pond and Herbert Senn, and intricate and whimsical costumes by David Walker and Charles Heightchew. The current costumes and sets were finalized in 1995 and debuted to great acclaim. More than 300 new costumes were built or completely refurbished that year, as well as the iconic 42-foot Christmas tree with 1,000 flame-proofed sculptured branches, and the larger-than-life 16-foot chaise and 12-foot chair. The Boston Globe wrote in 1995, “[the production’s] play with scale [is] a tangible evocation of a child’s imagination.” As for the costumes, designed by the late David Walker, he experimented with rows of pleated tulle on the mice costumes, the dark blues and purples on Drosselmeier’s stunning cape, and used playful effects such as hidden hula-hoops within the garments to bring the children’s costumes to life.
Last year, The Boston Globe wrote of the beloved sets and costumes, “the obvious take-away of Boston Ballet’s popular The Nutcracker is of lavish grandeur. Costumes bedazzle. Opulent sets include a giant Christmas tree that grows before our eyes and a balloon that carries Clara aloft to the Kingdom of Sweets.” Globe correspondent Karen Campbell continued, “But the artistic bedrock for all that splendor is striking choreography by artistic director Mikko Nissinen, some dazzling dancing, and Tchaikovsky’s glorious score.”
Special Nutcracker events for the 2011 production will include the second annual New Year’s Eve celebration performance with new added surprises for the audience. Last season’s New Year’s Eve celebration was a sell-out and garnered rave reviews. The Hub Review wrote, “[the] New Year’s Eve version [of The Nutcracker] proved good fun. In the lobby at intermission, the operative word seemed to be ‘amazing’ – I must have heard it half a dozen times. I had the feeling I was witnessing the start of a new Boston tradition – which was a great way to start off the New Year.” Additionally, Boston Ballet’s OFFSTAGE, a season-long event series for young professionals, hosts an evening at the theatre with an after-party on Thursday, December 8.
State Street Corporation, one of the world's leading providers of financial services to institutional investors, is presenting sponsor of this year’s production. State Street also plays a major role in Boston Ballet’s Nutcracker Magic event, to be held this year on December 8. Nutcracker Magic supports Boston Ballet’s Share the Magic program, which sends more than 3,000 children to Boston Ballet productions each year. Jamie Kase, Executive Vice President and Head of Global Sales and Marketing for State Street Global Advisors, will chair the event.
“State Street’s continued commitment to The Nutcracker brings this magical, holiday production to New England for another exciting season. Their support of the production impacts the many thousands of children and families who enjoy The Nutcracker every year, as well as thousands of children year-round through our Share the Magic program,” said Nissinen. “We are grateful for their support of Boston Ballet’s work on stage, in the studio, and in the community.”
The Nutcracker, a classical ballet in two acts based on a story by E.T.A. Hoffmann, follows the enchanting journey of young Clara, who receives a Nutcracker as a gift at a Christmas Eve party. Her nutcracker is ultimately transformed into a handsome young prince, who leads her through an enchanted forest and on to the Palace of Sweets, where she meets the Sugar Plum Fairy. Among the ballet’s most famous and memorable moments are a battle between toy soldiers and overgrown mice, a Christmas tree that grows to huge heights, the pas de deux of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier, and a shimmering snow scene.
For more information about The Nutcracker including events around Boston, blogs, videos and images of the production visit www.bostonballet.org
2011-2012 Season Tickets
Individual tickets, subscriptions, Group Sales tickets, and individual tickets for The Nutcracker are on sale now. Subscriptions and individual tickets are available online 24 hours a day at www.bostonballet.org, by phone at 617.695.6955, and in person at the box office at 19 Clarendon Street, Boston, Mon–Fri, 9:30am-5pm. Tickets start at $25 for season ballets and $35 for Night of Stars and The Nutcracker. Group Sales tickets for parties of 10 or more are available through the box office at 617.695.6955.
About Boston Ballet
Since 1963, Boston Ballet has been one of the leading dance companies in the world on stage, in the studio and in the community. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen and Executive Director Barry Hughson, the Company maintains an internationally acclaimed repertoire and the largest ballet school in North America, Boston Ballet School.
Boston Ballet maintains a repertoire of classical, neo-classical and contemporary works, ranging from full-length story ballets to new works by some of today's finest choreographers. Boston Ballet's second company, Boston Ballet II, is comprised of dancers who gain experience by performing with the Company and independently, presenting special programs to audiences throughout the Northeast.
Boston Ballet School, the official school of Boston Ballet, has a long-standing dedication to providing excellence and access to dance education. It reaches more than 10,000 students, ages 9-month to adult each year through its four core programs: Children’s Program, Classical Ballet Program, Adult Dance Program and Pre-Professional Program. Boston Ballet’s award-winning community outreach initiatives include Citydance, Taking Steps, and Adaptive Dance. The wide array of dance programs are held at three studio locations in Boston, Newton, and Marblehead with additional programs throughout New England, as well as at community centers and in the Boston Public Schools.
Boston Ballet gratefully acknowledges the following institutional partners:
State Street Corporation, 2011 Presenting Sponsor, The Nutcracker
The Boston Foundation
Massachusetts Cultural Council
National Endowment for the Arts