My absolute favorite date night of the year is Nutcracker night. Dave and I get dressed up, head to a performance by our beloved local company, The Carolina Ballet, and then duck into a cozy restaurant for drinks and small plates. I spend the entire evening practically giddy–it is literally my perfect date night. I am curious to see how long it takes us to invite our kids into the tradition when they’re old enough…right now, I think we might just need to go twice ;) Whatever your specific festivities surrounding The Nutcracker Ballet may look like, I think it’s safe to assume that they won’t be taking place in the same way this year.
To make sure that we can attend the ballet again next year, ballet companies across the country (and the world) need our help! The performing arts industries have suffered immensely as a result of the pandemic, and while it might feel like less “essential” of an industry to support, I love and believe in the words of Saint John Paul II in his Letter to Artists: “Every genuine art form in its own way is a path to the inmost reality of man and of the world. It is, therefore, a wholly valid approach to the realm of faith, which gives human experience its ultimate meaning.” Art, in whatever form, is a truly essential part of the human experience, and our lives would lose so much without it.
Many ballet companies have found creative ways to bring their performances of The Nutcracker to life through virtual experiences. I love the idea of going all out with a festive, Land of Sweets-inspired watch party, putting a 2020-appropriate twist to this beloved tradition! Below, find a few ideas to bring your Nutcracker watch party to life, as well as a list of where to watch The Nutcracker virtually (and support your favorite ballet company in the process) this season!
Nutcracker tea towel: Simply Jessica Marie (c/o) / Candy: Sugarfina / Red striped mugs: Target / Peppermint marshmallows: Smashmallow / Pink knit cardigan and white corduroy pants: J. Crew Factory / Pink velvet bow: J. Crew / Sparkly flats: Old, similar here and here
Where to watch The Nutcracker virtually
The Carolina Ballet: December 25 at 7 P.M. on WRAL
Houston Ballet: Digital performances of “Nutcracker Sweets” airing on-demand from December 15-January 8, $35
Ballet Austin: Digital performances airing on-demand from December 12-20, $30
Texas Ballet Theater: Digital performances of “The Nutty Nutcracker” airing on-demand from December 14-26, $30
Boston Ballet: Broadcast available online and airing on December 25 at 7 P.M. on NBC10 Boston and NECN
San Francisco Ballet: Virtual performance and interactive virtual experiences (virtual opera house tour, the chance to learn some of the choreography, etc.–so fun!) available November 28-December 31, $49
If you know of any others, please leave them in the comments below!