The Nutcracker

Performance Details

  • When December 4–26, 2021
  • Choreographer Christopher Wheeldon
  • Music Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
  • Running Time 2 hours

Christopher Wheeldon’s reimagined classic returns for the holidays. Follow young Marie and the Nutcracker Prince on a Christmas Eve journey through the 1893 World’s Fair, a dazzling spectacle of sights, sounds, and enchantment. This annual holiday tradition celebrates the magic of the season and the rich cultural heritage of Chicago.

Ticket holders for recently canceled performances, visit here for more information about ticketing options, including donates, credits, and refunds.

Proof of Vaccination Required for All Joffrey Performances

The Joffrey Ballet is committed to following all city, state, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

View and Download Our Digital Program Book

With special messages on behalf of the executive leadership team, notes from the choreographers, and more.

Casting Information

Updated throughout the performance run, explore roles and casting for corresponding dates.

Praise for The Nutcracker

”Pure winter magic. The Joffrey Ballet’s altogether unique production of The Nutcracker has never looked more glorious or been danced more ideally.“

WTTW Chicago Read the Review

“Carefully altered for its transplant to the Lyric Opera House, the holiday favorite still feels fresh and spontaneous.”

Chicago Sun-Times Read the Review

“A palpable sense of excitement filled the Lyric Opera’s lobbies as families dressed in their holiday finest filed in for the opening matinee of Joffrey Ballet’s The Nutcracker.”

Chicago Tribune Read the Review

Trailers, Sneak Peeks, and Inside the Studio

The Joffrey’s beloved version of The Nutcracker takes inspiration from Chicago's 1893 World's Fair, one of the city’s great historical attractions of the late 19th century. Pictured: Cara Marie Gary portrays Marie at her family’s annual holiday potluck. 
The mysterious Great Impresario brings the magic of the season to life. Pictured: Joffrey Artist Temur Suluashvili. 

About the Artists

Christopher Wheeldon OBE

The Tony Award®-winning choreographer continues to create and stage productions for many of the world’s major ballet companies.

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Born in 1840, Tchaikovsky is widely considered one of the most popular composers of his time.

Experience more of the 2021–2022 season.



Commissioning Sponsors

  • Margot and Josef Lakonishok
  • Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust
  • Hancher Auditorium, University of Iowa
  • The many “Believers”