Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky — Vladimir Malakhov
Ballet in two acts
Choreographed and directed by Vladimir Malakhov
Premiere: 29 November 2019
The ballet fairy tale The Nutcracker is beloved by children of all ages, and numerous ballet companies around the world stage this famous work every holiday season. One of the most beautiful works of classical ballet art, The Nutcracker leads audience through a Christmas world of luxury, colors, joy, imagination, princes, fairies and, of course, a lot of sweets. The story follows the adventures of a little girl named Clara, who receives a strange gift from her godfather on Christmas Eve. It is a wooden nutcracker in the shape of a soldier. Clara is delighted with her godfather, known for performing all sorts of magic tricks, and she loves his unusual gift. At midnight the Nutcracker comes to life with a little help of a wizard, and takes Clara into a magical world filled with numerous fascinating characters, who give the overjoyed little girl their undivided attention.
Today, nearly 130 years after the world premiere of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, composed to the libretto by one of the most famous ballet artists in history, Marius Petipa, and choreographed by his collaborator Lev Ivanov, it is hard to believe that this ballet, now incredibly popular, was at the time deemed a complete failure. Contemporaries did not recognize the musical genius of the work, its romantic imagery as well as the grotesque, and satirical characterization. The harsh criticism hurt the sensitive artist who in his mature works liked to escape into the land of fairy tales, composing for them his most luminous and brightest scores.
Following the October Revolution, The Nutcracker returned victoriously to the Russian stage, and then rapidly went around the world where it has been variously choreographed, yet always to the same brilliant score by Tchaikovsky and with elements of Ivanov's equally impressive choreography. The Zagreb audience had the chance to see The Nutcracker as soon as the early 1920s, and since 1970 this work has had a place in the permanent repertoire of the national ballet.
The Nutcracker is choreographed and directed by the world-renowned ballet artist Vladimir Malakhov, who has already collaborated with our ballet ensemble, staging the equally popular Swan Lake.