The Nutcracker: A Cherished Holiday Tradition Returns to The Music Center

A Message from Rachel Moore, The Music Center’s president and CEO

With this 16th season of Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, we are presenting companies who are dancing physically challenging choreography across multiple genres, from contemporary to story ballet.  The engagement of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet is no exception. We’re thrilled to bring the grandest Nutcracker back to Los Angeles from November 30 – December 2, 2018.

While many consider The Nutcracker ballet to be simply magical, which indeed it is, the George Balanchine version features stunningly powerful and complex choreography, which is much more than a mere spectacle.  These are beautiful yet highly-technical performances, made even more magical with the fanciful costume and set designs of fashion and artistic power-couple Ruben and Isabel Toledo, who have reimagined the production.  How fortunate we are to be able to bring this company and this rich choreography back to The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion stage for what I hope is becoming a cherished holiday tradition for all in Los Angeles County.



George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet

Many of us grew up loving Tchaikovsky’s score for The Nutcracker ballet, which we are presenting in this engagement with live orchestra.  Yet, with Mr. Balanchine’s choreography, the ballet itself plays a central role as it is the visual expression of the music.  He advises both the audience and the dancers to, “See the music, hear the dance.”  That is indeed the case with his The Nutcracker as the choreography gives a voice to the dance, which itself is incredibly musical.  All who grace the stage for this presentation must dance, even the youngest performers, and none of the steps are easy.  In fact, it takes 97 hours of rehearsal for each child to learn his or her role!  So, as we sit in the audience and “hear” the dance, we are guaranteed an incomparable experience, transported to another world where the timeless “Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy” becomes a visual and aural treat.



George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet


After our presentation of The Nutcracker, we take a short break in our dance series until April 2019 when Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater® returns to The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.  The Ailey company, which is celebrating its 60th anniversary, will perform three different programs of mixed repertory with classic Ailey works, contemporary masterworks and west coast premieres, along with the American masterpiece Revelations.  This celebratory performance, which runs from April 3-7, 2019, is not to be missed!



George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet


I hope you will also join us for more holiday experiences as we light up the night with Grand Park’s Winter Glow, a new month-long, 12-acre immersive nighttime art experience, taking place each night from now through December 25, 2018; the L.A. County Holiday Celebration live at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on December 24, 2018, from 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.; and Grand Park + The Music Center’s N.Y.E.L.A. on New Year’s Eve.  You can find more information about these free events at and

My warmest wishes to you and your family for a wonderful holiday season and a happy, healthy New Year.

Rachel Moore
President and CEO
The Music Center

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George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet

November 30, 2018 | 7:30 p.m.
December 1, 2018 | 2:00 p.m.
December 1, 2018 | 7:30 p.m.
December 2, 2018 | 11:00 a.m.
December 2, 2018 | 4:00 p.m.

The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

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