Why The Nutcracker is a Christmas Classic

Peter Tchaikovsky “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies” always gives a nostalgic feel for Christmas time. But what does a show about a nutcracker feuding with a Mouse king have to do with Christmas? Let’s explore how The Nutcracker ballet became a Christmas classic.

The Nutcracker is a ballet based on the short story, “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” by German writer E.T.A Hoffman. It originally premiered in Saint Petersburg, Russia in 1892. The story takes place around Christmas time which helps bring this tradition alive.

A nutcracker is actually an important symbol in German culture. While these decorations serve practical functions, they are also believed to keep out dangerous spirits and even bring good luck and fortune to a home. This really does not have much to do with Christmas and seems more of a Halloween tradition. However, since The Nutcracker takes place around Christmas time people began to associate the decoration with the holiday. People began decorating their house with nutcrackers.

Most importantly, The Nutcracker overall is a Christmas tradition because of the fantasy which exists within it. The gracefulness of the ballet filled with beautiful snowflakes help remind us of what we love about Christmas. Being able to travel into another world with a gallant Nutcracker and a Mouse King reminds us of our dreams before Christmas morning. “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies” reminds us of sugar plums and all the sweetness which goes with Christmas. This is the magic of the show, this is the magic that goes with Christmas.

If you love The Nutcracker, head over to the INSPIRE website and come watch our Dance Company keep this Christmas tradition alive.

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