The Nutcracker


The Orpheum Theater
December 14th, 15th, 21st, & 22nd

New Orleans Ballet Theatre presents its annual performances of The Nutcracker, a two-act ballet, originally choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov with a score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.




Act I: The Stahlbaum Home


It’s Christmas Eve and family and friends have gathered to decorate the Christmas tree. Children stand in awe of the tree and the party begins with them receiving presents. The clock strikes eight, and Drosselmeyer enters the room. A talented toymaker, he brings gifts for the children, including four lifelike dolls who delight everyone with their dancing before he puts them away.

Clara and Fritz are sad to see the dolls go, but Drosselmeyer has another toy for them: a wooden nutcracker. Clara takes a liking to the nutcracker, but Fritz purposely breaks it and Clara is heartbroken.

During the night, Clara returns to check on her broken nutcracker. The clock strikes midnight and she sees Drosselmeyer perched atop it. Mice fill the room and the Christmas tree grows tall. The nutcracker becomes life size as an army of gingerbread soldiers battle against and the mice, led by their king who begin to eat the soldiers.

The nutcracker leads the soldiers and dolls who carry off the wounded. The mouse king advances on the damaged nutcracker, but Clara distracts him, allowing the nutcracker to stab him. The mice retreat. The nutcracker transforms into a prince and leads Clara through a snow-covered pine forest and on to his kingdom.

Act II: The Land of Sweets

Clara and the prince arrive in the Land of Sweets, ruled by the Sugar Plum Fairy until the prince’s return. He tells her how Clara saved him from the mouse king and how he was transformed into his old self. A celebration of sweets is produced in Clara’s honor and they all dance, accompanied by shepherdesses and Mother Ginger with her children, the Polichinelles. Flowers waltz and the Sugar Plum Fairy and her cavalier dance.

After a final waltz, the Sugar Plum Fairy ushers Clara and the Prince from their throne. The prince bows and she kisses Clara goodbye. She leads them to a reindeer sleigh which takes off as they wave goodbye.


Cast Information

Important dates

  • Saturday, October 12
    Deadline to order Drosselmeyer doll and Trio Package

  • Saturday, October 26
    Deadline to order Nutcracker Cast T-Shirt

Nutcracker 2019 Handbook


Nutcracker Artwork

Each year New Orleans Ballet Theatre collaborates with a chosen local artist to create the promotional artwork for Nutcracker. These custom posters are now a tradition and a treasured collectible, unique to each year of NOBT’s holiday production. Posters are available for purchase.

2019:  Artwork by Nicholas Busciglio

2019: Artwork by Nicholas Busciglio

2016 : Artwork by Pippin Frisbie-Calder

2016: Artwork by Pippin Frisbie-Calder

2018 : Artwork by Simon Hardeveld

2018: Artwork by Simon Hardeveld

2015 : Artwork by Nurhan Gokturk

2015: Artwork by Nurhan Gokturk

2017 : Artwork by Michael Pajon

2017: Artwork by Michael Pajon