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Joffrey Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” has been a tradition in our family for years, so when we received the invite for a newly reimagined version on Opening Night, we couldn’t help but be excited to see a show we know and love in a whole new light. Set at the historic Auditorium Theatre in downtown Chicago, this highly anticipated version is reimagined by Tony Award-winning choreographer Christopher Wheeldon—inspired by the storied past of a town we love. “This stunning version of The Nutcracker pays homage to a magical moment in Chicago’s history,” said Artistic Director Ashley Wheater. “Creating a holiday classic that belongs specifically to the Joffrey—one that represents our dedication to unique repertoire and innovative works— has been one of my proudest moments as Artistic Director. Christopher’s work has found fresh meaning at the heart of The Nutcracker story and I am honored to delight Chicago audiences once again with this magical production.” 

The notable Chicago World Fair of 1892 came to life in the first act and a tour of the fairgrounds in the second act made us gain a little glimpse into our past. Not to worry because you will still take in the traditions of The Nutcracker like the battle between the toy soldiers and Rat King, the snow scene and the dancers from around the world. And, let’s not forget the music. Joffrey Music Director Scott Speck leads the Chicago Philharmonic with live music of the traditional songs from Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky for each performance giving us the memories that we enjoy every year. We loved seeing this special show performed in a new light and know that each and every Chicagoan and those visiting the city can appreciate this holiday tradition with a modern, Chicago twist. 

See this holiday masterpiece in Chicago from December 1st until the 30th. Single tickets range from $35-$165 and can be purchased at The Joffrey Ballet’s official box office located in the lobby at Joffrey Tower at 10 E. Randolf or the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University Box Office, by phone at 312.386.8905 or online at Joffrey.org

*Photos by Cheryl Mann

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Melissa Maynard

Melissa Maynard fell in love with travel as a young girl while taking a road trip adventure to Mark Twain’s hometown of Hannibal, MO, after a tour of a sprawling Gilded-Age mansion. With a lifted taste of all things luxury (and a cabin adventure, here and there), Melissa loves checking out opulent hotels in exotic destinations and far off places. Favorite thing about travel…the wanderlust of it all. She has written for the Chicago Tribune and is the editor-in-chief of Factio Magazine —luxury publishers for Glam.com, and Bliss.com.