the nutcracker grand rapids ballet michigan

By Jade Butler

The countless intricate details in The Nutcracker all come together seamlessly every December to create West Michigan’s favorite family holiday tradition seen by over 50,000 people since its premiere in 2014.

  • • This season, there are 14 performances including four shows at Midland Center for the Arts in Midland, Michigan and 10 at DeVos Performance Hall in Grand Rapids.
  • • In each performance, there are 68 Grand Rapids Ballet School students and approximately 40 company dancers—most of whom are doing multiple roles. In fact, any company dancer can do up to five separate roles per show!
  • • There are 149 original costumes with 58 of those being tutus which require over 5,000 yards of tulle.
  • • There are three Sugar Plum Fairy tutus, five Marzipan Castle scene tutus, 19 snow scene tutus, 15 Waltz of the Flower tutus, two Spanish tutus, 10 harlequin tutus, and two Dream Clara tutus.
  • • It takes seven full-size semi-trucks to move the entire production to DeVos Performance Hall.
  • • It takes seven days to assemble the Broadway-quality sets designed by Tony Award winner Eugene Lee based on the illustrations of The Polar Express author Chris Van Allsburg.
  • • There are 15 toy soldiers and seven mice in each fight scene including one infamous Mouse King.
  • • There are 12 individual snowflakes in the snow scene and 12 pink flowers twirl with one Sugar Plum Fairy in the Waltz of the Flowers.
  • • In each performance, 30+ crowns and tiaras are worn: 12 snow scene crowns, 1 Dream Clara tiara, two Sugar Plum Fairy tiaras, and three Marzipan Castle crowns. Talk about glamour!
  • • Clara’s Nutcracker Party is attended by 400 happy children, parents, and grandparents.
  • • The company and school both spend at least two months rehearsing Val Caniparoli’s gorgeous choreography including two dress rehearsals.

All of this adds up to one spectacular show that you and your family won’t want to miss. Tickets are available at 616.454.4771 x10 or on our website.

© Copyright - Grand Rapids Ballet 2021