The Nutcracker performed by the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre

The Nutcracker performed by the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre

 1. Magical

The Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s performance of The Nutcracker is not just a ballet, it’s also an exciting magic show. You get to enjoy two shows in one! We’re not just talking about turning wands into roses or making stuff disappear, even the set magically transforms!

2. Multi-Cultural

It was refreshing to see a diverse cast perform the 120 year old ballet in front of an equally diverse audience. Better still was what they did with Act II (The Divertissement). The Spanish (Chocolate), Arabian (Coffee), and Russian (Trepak) dances were all stunning…  but the ballet styled Lion Dance routine during the Chinese (Tea) Dance was amazing!

3. Colorful

The holiday season should be joyous, but this time of year can also be dark and gloomy in the Burgh. The Nutcracker offers up a healthy dose of color from the moment you take your seat. The vivid set design and costumes will open your eyes as the story touches your heart.

4. Sexy

Face it, ballet is a gracefully sexy art form. Tights with bulging muscles, tutus flying in the air, and beautiful dancers pressing their bodies against topless men after leaping around the stage as if the law of gravity was figment of some fiction writer’s imagination… you get the point. The PBT’s version of The Nutcracker is pure, yet sexy!

5. Local

As usual, the PBT did a great job in adding a bit of a Pittsburgh theme to the show. This year, Terrence Orr (artistic director) threw some bridges in the background, a carriage with H.J. Heinz painted on the side, the Kaufmann’s building downtown, and the mansion, seen in the pic above, sort of resembles the Clayton – or maybe it was one of the billion dollar homes in Shadyside. But most important is the role that the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre has had in bringing some of the world’s best shows to the Burgh since 1969.

*The bummer

There was one disappointment: the lack of a live concert to accompany the dancers. This feeling was especially reinforced after hearing the Pittsburgh Symphony Ochestra perform Tchaikovsky’s musical score a week after seeing the ballet. Boring Pittsburgh hopes that the PBT will consider hiring the PSO to make it a perfect show in the future – even if the ticket prices are raised because of it.

PBT’s Nutcracker trailer (video) | @PghBallet | more PBT shows

When can I see it?
December 2 – December 23, 2011
Find the full schedule here

Where is it?
The Benedum Center
237 7th Street (map)
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
(412) 456-6666

Buy tickets