Thursday, December 15th at 7 p.m.

Friday, December 16th at 11 a.m. & 7 p.m.

Saturday, December 17th at 1 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Sunday, December 18th at 1 p.m. & 7 p.m.

The holiday favorite The Nutcracker returns to Playhouse Square's Connor Palace! With only seven performances of this magical production, Cleveland Ballet promises to enchant and inspire all audiences.

A production suitable to audiences of all ages, this production is Cleveland's very own and is one not to be missed. The ballet in two acts is based on the original story of E.T.A. Hoffman with music composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. The fascination of Tchaikovsky's score and the suitability of the theme for Christmas entertainment has inspired many choreographers including Cleveland Ballet's own Artistic Director Gladisa Guadalupe who has created a version with a twist!

© New Image Photography


Individual tickets may be purchased below through Playhouse Square or through Cleveland Ballet Ticketing at 216.320.9000 x 107 or tickets@clevelandballet.org


See Cleveland Ballet's productions with a season subscription. Different subscriptions are available to accommodate different demands!



Gladisa Guadalupe


Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky


E.T.A. Hoffmann


Jeff McLaughlin


Dennis Dugan


Cleveland Ballet Costume Shop

© New Image Photography


© New Image Photography


Act I

On a snowy and very cold winter evening, a skillful toy maker and his apprentice are putting together the finishing touches on the gifts they will bring to the annual holiday party of the Grimaldi family. The unique, mystical and rare presents will bring illusion, fantasy and imagination to children and adults.

On Christmas Eve, the Grimaldi family's living room is alive with activity as everyone prepares for the festivities. The nanny, Antonia, keeps a watchful eye over the children. Caroline and Albert, as they finish decorating the tree. Once the decorations are put in place, everyone gathers in the parlor to greet their guests. Startled by a noise, Caroline looks toward the fireplace and sees a mouse running through the parlor. Quickly, she runs to join the others in welcoming their guests.

As the evening progresses, Caroline and Albert's godfather, Drosselmeyer, suddenly appears. A skillful toymaker, Drosselmeyer has brought hand-made gifts for everyone there. One gift in particular made especially for the Grimaldi home is a Nutcracker doll dressed as an attractive soldier. Drosselmeyer's apprentice has grown into a very handsome young man, gaining the attention of all of the young girls, especially Caroline.

As the evening grows late, guests begin leaving and the Grimaldi family retires during a winter's snowy night. Curious Caroline returns to the parlor to get the beautiful Nutcracker doll and her lovely dress. Tired, she falls asleep on the couch and slips into a nightmare: as the family's Christmas tree grows, the parlor fills with mice led by a Mouse King, while toy soldiers spring to life, with Caroline's beloved Nutcracker doll as their leader. Caroline quickly realizes that the Nutcracker is in danger and decides to take charge, injuring the Mouse King.

Caroline faints, and her dream takes a new direction. She meets the wooden doll that is now a Prince. They travel to the Land of Snow, where they are welcomed by dancing snowflakes. Floating angels lead the way as Caroline and the Prince embark on a journey to magical lands.

Act II

Traveling to magical lands in a hot air balloon, Caroline and the Prince are greeted by Spaniards, Chinese dancers and a friendly dragon, an Arabian Princess and her entourage, and Ukrainian men with Matryoshka dolls. As the fairy-tale journey continues, Drosselmeyer brings Caroline and the Prince to a beautiful garden where aromatic flowers dance a lovely waltz.

The dream culminates with the garden's King and Queen performing an exquisite pas de deux in their honor.

Back in the parlor, Mama and Papa find Caroline asleep on the couch with the Nutcracker doll in her arms and wearing the dress she received at the party.

As they take Caroline back to her bedroom, the Nutcracker doll magically appears and takes a bow...Was this a nightmare, a fairy-tale or just the imagination of young Caroline?


Please note that these charts are for informational purposes only. These do not reflect seat availability in Connor Palace, please visit Playhouse Square's website for the most up to date seating availability.

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