Most ballet enthusiasts would probably agree that if you can see only one ballet during your lifetime, it should be a Tchaikovsky ballet. And if you happen to be in New York during the month of December, the choice is clear: The New York City Ballet’s rendition of the Russian maestro’s The Nutcracker is a performance you must not miss. From the mischievous “Dance of the Sugar Plumb Fairies,” to the sultry “Arabian Dance,” to the galloping “Russian Dance,” to the luxuriant flourishing of “The Waltz of the Flowers,” the music of The Nutcracker so permeates contemporary Christmas culture, it’s hard to imagine the holiday season without it. Even if you’ve seen a production of The Nutcracker before, you’ve never seen it performed with the fiery gusto and cool elegance of The New York City Ballet, molded into one of the world’s premier companies by visionary choreographer George Balanchine. If you can see only one ballet, this is it.
Location: David H. Koch Theatre at Lincoln Center