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Support Colorado Ballet on Colorado Gives Day

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Be a part of Colorado Gives Day and help increase philanthropy in Colorado!

Give the gift of dance this year by supporting Colorado Ballet any time TODAY, December 8 at

The value of your donation will be increased by the FirstBank Incentive Fund.  Thank you for your support!

History of The Nutcracker

Monday, December 07, 2015

The Nutcracker ballet has always been a traditional holiday favorite for many families. From elaborate costumes to the sounds of the orchestra, this ballet has become a timeless classic. With all of the popularity, not many know that the Nutcracker was actually a failure when it first premiered, partially because of its confusing choreography.

The ballet was also based off the book by E.T.A. Hoffman titled “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.” Both critics and parents alike thought this original was too dark and not meant for kids to watch. With the help of a French writer named Alexandre Dumas, it was rewritten to be more family friendly.

Some differences between Hoffman’s and Dumas’s versions are the names of the main character, the girl who is given the Nutcracker as a gift. Hoffman’s version has her named as Clara, while in Dumas’s version she is named Marie.

Although there are several adaptations, the Nutcracker is a tradition for the holidays and will remain a classic for many years to come. It has also become a much bigger success since its initial premiere and is a must-do for many ballet companies every year because of the high demand.

Delphine Dubois. Histoire d'un casse-noisette. Alexandre Dumas: deux siècles de littérature vivante. Société des Amis d'Alexandre Dumas.

Dana Benton and Francisco Estevez by Allen Birnbach

Facts about Colorado Ballet's The Nutcracker

Wednesday, December 02, 2015
Did you know?
  • Colorado Ballet has been performing The Nutcracker for 55 seasons! The Company presented its very first production of The Nutcracker at the Bonfils Theater in Denver to sold out audiences in 1961.
  • The production continues to remain as popular as ever; most performances are completely sold out!
  • It takes a lot of people and moving parts to create The Nutcracker. Our 015 production includes: 
    • 30 Company dancers
    • 15 Studio Company dancers
    • More than 80 Academy students
    • Several guest performers
    • A full orchestra of musicians
    • More than 300 costumes.
  • During each performance: 
    • Stagehands drop more than 100 pounds of artificial snow on stage.
    • Use more than 50 pounds of dry ice to create fog.
Photo from Colorado Ballet's 1961 production of The Nutcracker

Artists of Colorado Ballet rehearse the Spanish dance from Act II of The Nutcracker

Monday, November 30, 2015

Artists of Colorado Ballet rehearse the Spanish dance from Act II of The Nutcracker.

KeyBank Presents Colorado Ballet's 55th annual
The Nutcracker

November 28-December 27, 2015
Ellie Caulkins Opera House
With live music by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra

Artists of Colorado Ballet rehearse Snow scene from The Nutcracker

Friday, November 27, 2015

Artists of Colorado Ballet rehearse Snow scene from The Nutcracker.

KeyBank Presents Colorado Ballet's 55th annual
The Nutcracker
November 28-December 27, 2015
Ellie Caulkins Opera House
With live music by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

From all of us at Colorado Ballet, we hope that you have a happy Thanksgiving!  Thank you for your support!

Fall-Winter look book 2015-2016 featuring artists of Colorado Ballet

Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Marks-Lloyds Furs (ML Furs) presents: Fall-Winter look book 2015-2016
Shot on Location: Ellie Caulkins Theatre July 22, 2015
Release Date: September 15, 2015
ML Furs graciously thanks the dancers of the Colorado Ballet: Morgan Buchanan, Kevin Hale, Tracy Jones, Domenico Luciano, as well as Artistic Director Gil Boggs and Susan Struna, who along with staff members at the Denver Performing Arts Complex, made the entire shoot possible and a joy!
Please take advantage of our exclusive offer to members of the ballet from November 12, 2015-December 12, 2015 using coupon code Ballet25

Colorado Ballet seeks schools for free live streaming of The Nutcracker performance

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Colorado Ballet seeks schools throughout Colorado and out-of-state to participate in a free remote live stream of its student matinee performance of The Nutcracker at 11 a.m. on December 4.

This is the second time that Colorado Ballet will live stream a production in its student matinee series, which brings nearly 2,000 students to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in the Denver Performing Arts Complex to watch ballet performances with full sets, costumes and a live orchestra.  Colorado Ballet hosted its first live stream during the student matinee of La Sylphide on October 1.  Students in Rico, CO and Sheridan WY streamed the performance and Colorado Ballet is looking to expand the number of schools participating in the program for The Nutcracker student matinee. 

“This is such a great opportunity for students here,” said one of the teachers in Wyoming who participated in the La Sylphide live stream with her class.

Colorado Ballet opens its fall and spring student matinee productions to all interested schools and school groups, but The Nutcracker student matinee has always been an invitation-only student matinee presented at no cost to the highest percentage Title I schools.  While the in-person student matinee this year will remain invitation-only, the live stream is open to any school that would like to participate.

“The live stream is an amazing way to expose students to dance who otherwise wouldn’t be able to see our shows,” said Anne O’Connor, Colorado Ballet’s Director of Education and Community Partnerships.  “Teachers are really excited to be able to offer professional-level performing arts in areas where there is limited access.”

Interested schools can contact O’Connor at for more information, including technical requirements.  A study guide with curriculum suggestions relevant to the production is available at

The Nutcracker features choreography after Marius Petipa and music by Tchaikovsky, performed live by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra.  The total runtime of the production including the intermission is 1 hour and 50 minutes.  The 20 minute intermission will feature live interviews with artistic staff and dancers for schools participating in the live stream.

Dana Benton by Mike Watson

Interview with Yosvani Ramos about The Nutcracker

Monday, November 23, 2015

This is an interview with Colorado Ballet principal dancer Yosvani Ramos about dancing the Nutcracker Prince and the Cavalier in The Nutcracker.  The video includes rehearsal footage of Yosvani Ramos, Dana Benton and Sharon Wehner.
KeyBank Presents Colorado Ballet's 55th annual
The Nutcracker
November 28-December 27, 2015
Ellie Caulkins Opera House
With live music by the Colorado Ballet Orchestra

Colorado Ballet talks about The Nutcracker on Colorado & Company

Friday, November 20, 2015

Artistic Director Gil Boggs, principal dancer Dana Benton and soloist Francisco Estevez talk about The Nutcracker on 9News' Colorado & Company.


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