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Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Tuesday, November 15, 2011

IU Ballet Theater presents 'The Nutcracker'

WHAT: IU Ballet Theater's The Nutcracker by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
WHEN: 8 p.m. Dec. 2-3; 2 p.m. Dec. 3-4
WHERE: IU's Musical Arts Center, 101 N. Jordan Ave., just north of the intersection at Third Street.
TICKETS: Purchase tickets at the Musical Arts Center box office from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, or online at Bursar billing is available for students.

Nov. 15, 2011

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Clara. The Mouse King. The Nutcracker. And, of course, the Sugar Plum Fairy.


The Arabian Dance is one of many featured choreographies in the second act of "The Nutcracker."

Print-Quality Photo

They return to the stage in the Indiana University Ballet Theater's 53rd annual production of The Nutcracker at the Musical Arts Center, at 8 p.m. Dec. 2-3 and at 2 p.m. Dec. 3-4.

As in other communities around the country, The Nutcracker has become integral to Bloomington's holiday traditions and the IU Ballet Theater season.

"It's about Christmas, so it puts people in the holiday mood," Michael Vernon, chair of the IU Jacobs School of Music's Ballet Department and Nutcracker choreographer, said of the seasonal production. "The music is so well known, and people connect with it. The heroine is a young girl, and parents and young girls identify with her. It's full of magic and wonderful effects and yet it's not drawn out, so younger children will be entertained. There's something for everyone."

The Nutcracker spotlights the university's excellent corps de ballet and soloists, Vernon said. The role of Clara is danced by students in IU's Pre-College program, while the role of the Sugar Plum Fairy is performed by different dancers at three of the performances.

Tchaikovsky's classic score will be played by the University Orchestra under guest conductor Scott Sandmeier. The set was designed by C. David Higgins, chair of the Jacobs School's Opera Studies Department.

The Nutcracker, composed in 1892, is based on an old German fairy tale, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, written in 1816 by E.T.A. Hoffmann. It tells the story of young Clara, who receives a toy soldier nutcracker from her mysterious godfather. When she falls asleep with the Nutcracker in her arms and starts to dream, magical things begin to happen.

Purchase tickets at the Musical Arts Center box office from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, or online at A discounted price is available through the MAC box office for all students, and bursar billing is available.

Attendees can meet Clara and other characters at a special Nutcracker Tea held on the mezzanine following each matinee performance. Limited tickets are available at the MAC box office.

For more information about the Jacobs School of Music, see