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Posted on November 9th, 2007 in Uncategorized.

Nothing says the Holiday Season like “The Nutcracker” ballet. Every year, beginning in late November and running into Christmas Eve, this most famous ballet is performed by acclaimed ballet companies across America.

We are not trying to rush the Holiday Season (it’s only mid-November), but tickets for the event here in Portland tend to sell out early, particularly as we approach Christmas. And, of course, so also does Portland lodging. Wherever you decide to stay — and we hope you’ll choose The Fulton House — make your reservations early.

Let’s look at some of the history of this famous ballet. “The Nutcracker” is based on a book written by E.T.A. Hoffman entitled “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.” In the late 19th Century (1891, to be exact), ledgendary choreographer Marius Petipa commissioned the immortal Petr Tchaikovsky to write music for the ballet.

The following year, the premier performance of “The Nutcracker” took place at Russia’s Mariinsky Theatre, home of the Kirov Ballet. It was an utter failure, unloved by critics and audiences alike. The performance only became immensely popular when it made its way across western Europe in the 1930’s and to the United States by 1940, performed by Ballet Russe. The first full-length performance by an American ballet company was by the San Francisco Ballet, choreographed by W. Christensen.

“The Nutcracker” is today a wildly popular holiday tradition around the world. Ballet companies perform the choreography created by George Balanchine, born Giorgi Melitonis dze Balanchivadze of Georgian parents in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1904. The first performnance under his choreography was during the Christmas season in New York City in 1954.

The Oregon Ballet Theatre, under the artistic direction of Christopher Stowell with music by the OBT Orchestra, will perform George Balanchine’s “The Nutcracker” from December 8-24 at Portland’s Keller Auditorium. Tickets are available from Ticketmaster, from or by telephoning 503-2Ballet.

Every year, this event sells out. Order your tickets and make your lodging reservations now. For your information, The Fulton House is located in southwest Portland (as is Keller Auditorium), only about 6 minutes away; and it’s only 8 minutes away by public transportation, which you can catch 1/2 block from us.

Happy Holidays!