The stage is set for the Philadelphia region’s most beloved holiday tradition as Pennsylvania Ballet and PNC Arts Alive present George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™.

The stage is set for the Philadelphia region’s most beloved holiday tradition as Pennsylvania Ballet and PNC Arts Alive present George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™. An enduring production in its 42nd year, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ returns to the Academy of Music at Broad and Locust Streets, December 4 through December 31, 2010.

“There’s just nothing that compares to Balanchine’s Nutcracker,” Artistic Director Roy Kaiser says. “His choreography is a near-perfect reflection of the Tschaikovsky score. We’re so proud to bring this production to Philadelphia audiences year after year.”

Lavish sets and costumes bring the charming story of Marie and her Prince to life, beginning with a grand party scene where she receives her precious nutcracker. Follow the adventure as Marie dreams of a harrowing battle with the Mouse King, then travels through a glistening snow scene into the wondrous Land of the Sweets. The angelic sounds of the Philadelphia Boys Choir complement the spectacular Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra. Pennsylvania Ballet’s luminous dancers and dozens of local dance students take center stage to the delight of nearly 50,000 people each year.

For the second year in a row, Pennsylvania Ballet and Independence Starts Here! will offer Audio Description (AD) for blind or low-vision patrons at a performance of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™. AD, available on Sunday, December 19 at 4 p.m., is a communication method that allows blind or low-vision patrons to listen to a live description of the visual elements of a production through an ear piece and small receiver. AD patrons will receive Braille and large-print programs and are invited backstage for a pre-show touch tour (or “sensory seminar”) with the sets, props, and costumes. To register and purchase tickets for the AD performance of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ on Sunday, December 19 at 4 p.m. at the Academy of Music, contact Group Sales Manager Arajua Backman at 215.587.6921 or abackman@paballet.org.

Tickets to all 24 performances of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ are on sale now, with prices ranging from $30 to $139. Tickets are available online at paballet.org, by phone at 215.893.1999, and in person at the Kimmel Center Box Office.
George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ performances at the Academy of Music:
§    Saturday, December 4 at 7 p.m.
§    Sunday, December 5 at noon and 4 p.m.
§    Saturday, December 11 at 11 a.m.*, 3 p.m., and 7 p.m.
§    Sunday, December 12 at noon and 4 p.m.
§    Friday, December 17 at 7 p.m.
§    Saturday, December 18 at 11 a.m.*, 3 p.m., and 7 p.m.
§    Sunday, December 19 at noon* and 4 p.m.
§    Thursday, December 23 at 2 p.m.*
§    Friday, December 24 at noon
§    Sunday, December 26 at noon and 4 p.m.
§    Monday, December 27 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
§    Tuesday, December 28 at 2 p.m.
§    Wednesday, December 29 at 2 p.m.*
§    Thursday, December 30 at 2 p.m.*
§    Friday, December 31 at noon

PENNSYLVANIA BALLET’S SPECIAL HOLIDAY HAPPENINGS

“NUTCRACKER MAGIC” CHILDREN’S PARTY
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 4 AT NOON
HYATT AT THE BELLEVUE AND ACADEMY OF MUSIC
Don’t miss Pennsylvania Ballet’s glorious holiday party, a family tradition for the past 23 years. Children will be charmed by entertainers, crafts, games, and costumed characters like the Sugarplum Fairy and the Mouse King, plus a delicious lunch, all inside the magnificent ballroom of the Hyatt at the Bellevue. Following the food and festivities, guests will enjoy a private performance of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ at the Academy of Music at 2 p.m. This annual party is co-chaired this year by Ali Bruder of Malvern, Ellen Caplan of Villanova, and Margaret Anne Nolen of Newtown Square.

Nutcracker Magic guests are encouraged to bring unwrapped toys to donate to Cradles to Crayons, and all children will be invited to make a holiday card for a patient at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Tickets to Nutcracker Magic are $150 or $250, and sponsorship opportunities are available from $500 to $5,000. All sponsors receive free Nutcracker performance tickets to donate to the charity of their choice. Tickets to the 2 p.m. private performance only are available for $85. For more information and tickets, contact Special Events Manager Barbara Vogdes at 215.587.6916 or bvogdes@paballet.org, or visit paballet.org.

TEA WITH THE SUGARPLUM FAIRY
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 5 AT 2 P.M. (CHOOSE THE NOON OR 4 P.M. PERFORMANCE)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 11 AT 1 P.M. (CHOOSE THE 11 A.M. OR 3 P.M. PERFORMANCE)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 18 AT 1 P.M. (CHOOSE THE 11 A.M. OR 3 P.M. PERFORMANCE)
DOUBLETREE HOTEL
Enjoy a performance of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™, and meet the Sugarplum Fairy for a special tea at the Doubletree Hotel, just across the street from the Academy of Music! Prices start at $90 and include a performance ticket and a delectable buffet. To order, contact Group Sales Manager Arajua Backman at 215.587.6921 or abackman@paballet.org, or visit paballet.org.

FAMILY MATINEE SERIES “FAMILY DAY” — BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND!
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 11 AT 1 P.M. (CHOOSE THE 11 A.M. OR 3 P.M. PERFORMANCE)
DOUBLETREE HOTEL
The performances of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ on Saturday, December 11 at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. are part of Pennsylvania Ballet’s Family Matinee Series and include free Family Day activities at the Doubletree Hotel, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. This fun afternoon of entertainment, games, and crafts, as well as autograph opportunities with your favorite dancers, keeps the magic of the performance alive long after the curtain closes. To order a Family Matinee Series subscription, including Swan Lake in March and La Fille mal gardée in June, please call 215.893.1955 or visit paballet.org

THE NUTCRACKER BRUNCH
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 12 AT 1 P.M. (PERFORMANCE AT 4 P.M.)
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 19 AT 1 P.M. (PERFORMANCE AT 4 P.M.)
THE OMNI HOTEL AT INDEPENDENCE PARK
Celebrate the holidays with special visits from the Sugarplum Fairy, Mouse King, and Santa Claus while savoring a gourmet buffet with the entire family. A performance ticket, the buffet, and valet parking at the Omni Hotel are included for $129. To order, contact Group Sales Manager Arajua Backman at 215.587.6921 or abackman@paballet.org, or visit paballet.org.

CHILDREN’S ENCHANTMENT FUND
Give the gift of ballet this holiday season! Pennsylvania Ballet’s Children’s Enchantment Fund enables underserved families to see George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ free of charge. One performance ticket is distributed for every $30 tax-deductible donation. To make a donation, please call Annual Fund Manager Christina Freeman at 215.587.6913 or visit paballet.org.

About Steven Weisz

A Graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with advanced degrees in Psychology and Education is an entrepreneur and CEO for several for-profits and non-profit corporations in the region. He is also an adjunct professor of Psychology with several local Universities.

Steven is currently the CEO of Delaware Valley on Line, one of the first regional Internet Service Provides that now focuses on business-class web hosting, design, and internet marketing. He is president and founder of Rainbow Promotions Inc., a special events and entertainment agency established in the late 70’s, that services corporate and retail accounts both locally and nationally.

Steven is the Founder of PhiladelphiaDANCE.org, the largest web presence and resource for the dance community in the greater Philadelphia region, and the Founder and Editor of The Dance Journal. His involvement in the dance community extends to being Director of Graffito Works, an international platform for dancers and performing artists to create site-specific work and to make it readily accessible to the public.

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