The Nutcracker

Where to see the classic holiday ballet. Plus: meet-and-greets & tea times
Nutcracker 1776

The Nutcracker ballet lights up several local stages this month. You can see Tchaikovsky’s holiday ballet presented by:

The Brandywine Ballet in West Chester, Dec. 10-19. $22-$37.
The Pennsylvania Ballet in Phila., Dec. 4-31. $30-$139.
The Rock School in Phila. & Haverford, Dec. 4, 11-12. Nutcracker 1776, a patriotic, historical version.
The New Jersey Youth Ballet in Mercer County, NJ, Dec. 17-19.
• Several more local companies. See the day-by-day calendar.


Nutcracker Tea

You can make the holiday experience more magical for your kids at these accompanying tea times and other family activities.

Pennsylvania Ballet's The NutcrackerOn opening day of the Pennsylvania Ballet’s George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Sat., Dec. 4, the Hyatt at the Bellevue in Phila. hosts lunch, crafts, games & holiday entertainment that includes a visit from the Sugarplum Fairy during a Nutcracker Magic Children’s Party at 12noon. Sip Tea with the Sugarplum Fairy at Doubletree Hotel, Sun., Dec. 5 or Saturdays, Dec. 11 & 18. Also on Sat., Dec. 11, the Doubletree hosts Family Day entertainment for ticketholders between the 11am and 3pm performances. Dine with characters & Santa Claus at The Nutcracker Brunch at The Omni Hotel, Sundays, Dec. 12 & 19. For pricing and ticket packages, visit

Vineland Nutcracker TeaVineland Regional Dance Company encourages kids to dress-up to meet Clara, the Sugarplum Fairy and other dancers at a Nutcracker Tea on Sat., Dec. 4 at 2:30pm in the Luciano Center at Cumberland County College. Families can enjoy “treats from the Land of the Sweets” and listen to a re-telling of the Nutcracker story. Each child receives a memento and a keepsake photo will be available for an additional fee. $25 per person. Vineland performs the ballet Dec. 18-19.

Delaware Dance Company hosts a Sugar Plum Tea to complement your child’s experience with the magical ballet on Sat., Dec. 11 before the 2pm matinee performance. Starting at 12noon, families can meet characters and enjoy “treats from the Land of the Sweets.” $10 for Tea only.

Repertory's Land of the Sweets PartyA Land of the Sweets Party follows the 2pm Repertory Dance Theatre Nutcracker performance on Sat., Dec. 11 at Allentown Symphony Hall. Kids can enjoy treats and meet some of the dancers. $23-$47 tickets include show and party.

In West Chester, Brandywine Ballet’s pre-show Nutcracker Tea returns for 2010 at the Memorial Library on Saturdays, Dec. 11 & 18, 12noon. Kids can meet Clara, the Sugarplum Fairy and other characters, and enjoy light lunch fare such as tea sandwiches, fruit and cookies. $25 for Tea only.

More Tea Times

Fairy-Tale Tea PartyThough not Nutcracker-themed, these events offer additional opportunities to sip tea and celebrate the holidays.

At a Fairy-Tale Tea Party at the Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington on Sat., Dec. 4, kids ages 3-10 are encouraged to dress-up for holiday art activities, family gallery tours and of course, tea. $19-$29. For more info or to register, call the Museum at 302-351-8504 or e-mail:

Village Productions/Tri-County Performing Arts Center presents a Victorian Character Tea to compliment the performance of A Christmas Carol on Sat., Dec. 11. Families can meet characters from the show & Santa and sing Christmas carols. $29-$39 for Tea and show.

Stephanie Halinski is calendar editor of MetroKids.

Categories: Family Fun Features