Although Culture at the Cinema, presented at the Regal Camana Bay, usually offers only one screening of a live theater production per month, it traditionally breaks the rules for the Bolshoi Ballet’s performance of “The Nutcracker.”

This year is no exception. “The Nutcracker” will be screened on Dec. 11 at 3 p.m. and Dec. 18 at 6 p.m., and all ages are welcome, unlike other Culture at the Cinema events that allow only those 18 years and older to attend.

Performances sold out last year, so the public is encouraged to get their tickets early.

‘The Nutcracker’ ballet story

‘The Nutcracker’ ballet is based on the story “The Nutcracker and the King of Mice” written by E.T.A. Hoffman. Although what is seen on the stage today is different in detail from the original story, the basic plot remains the same: It is the story of a young German girl who dreams of a Nutcracker Prince and a fierce battle against a Mouse King with seven heads.

Scenes

There are many magical, colorful scenes in the ballet, beginning with the Party Scene, where Marie – the female lead – is given the Nutcracker for Christmas. What follows is the Fight Scene as Marie begins to dream, and when the clock strikes midnight, strange things begin to happen.

Marie begins shrinking as her beautiful Christmas tree grows high above her. The toys around the tree come to life while the room fills with an army of mice, led by the fierce Mouse King. As the Nutcracker awakens, he leads his army of toy soldiers into battle with the mice – a truly epic scene.

In the Land of Snow, the Nutcracker turns into a Prince and takes Marie on a journey to an enchanted forest wonderland where they are welcomed by dancing snowflakes.

Many children will no doubt be delighted by the Land of Sweets, where the Prince and Marie are greeted by the Sugar Plum Fairy. The Prince tells her about their daring battle with the army of mice and she rewards them with a celebration of dances.

As a finale, the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Cavalier dance a lovely pas de deux, then Marie awakens from her dream and finds herself by her Christmas tree with her beloved Nutcracker.

The Bolshoi

The Bolshoi’s version of “The Nutcracker” has a unique and beautiful sense of romance and philosophy, danced by the heroic Denis Rodkin as the courageous Prince and Anna Nikulina as Marie.

Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children. To see the upcoming schedule for Culture at the Cinema, visit www.bigscreen.ky.

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