The Royal Opera House is excited to announce a packed schedule of Christmas treats that includes festive highlights from both The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera.
The Royal Ballet’s much-loved production of The Nutcracker returns to our stage, in a COVID-safe restaging of Peter Wright’s celebrated two-act production. Opening on Friday 11 December and running until Sunday 3 January there will be 17 magical performances, with tickets available to purchase from Tuesday 1 December. Enjoy the much-loved elements of this cherished classic, from the magical growing Christmas tree, to the enchanting Dance of the Snowflakes and spectacular duet with the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Prince in the Kingdom of Sweets.
New for The Royal Ballet’s 2020 production is a battle scene between the Nutcracker, the Mouse King and their armies, choreographed by Will Tuckett. Combined with Tchaikovsky‘s sumptuous score, performed live by the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, and charming designs by Julia Trevelyan Oman, this classic ballet is not to be missed.
Leading up to this festive treat, The Royal Ballet invites audiences to watch the dancers in a special filmed Insight of The Nutcracker in Rehearsal via the Royal Opera House YouTube channel on Tuesday 1 December at 7pm GMT. This streamed event is part of the Royal Opera House digital Insights programme.
In addition, The Royal Opera presents four performances of a sparkling Christmas Concert on 18, 19 and 20 December. The festive staging will include extracts from fairy-tale opera favourites including Rossini’s La Cenerentola (Cinderella) and Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, as well as rousing tunes from Royal Opera repertory classics including Puccini’s La bohème, Mozart’s The Magic Flute and Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on Christmas Carols to bring out the full seasonal spirit.
Soloists Jennifer Davis, Hanna Hipp, Jeremy White and Roderick Williams perform, as well as Stephanie Wake-Edwards and Dominic Sedgwick, with the combined forces of the Royal Opera Chorus, Jette Parker Young Artists and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House in this wonderful Yuletide celebration.
Alex Beard, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, said: ‘After such a challenging year, I am immensely proud to be unveiling this roster of uplifting Christmas highlights for the whole family. As we continue to navigate uncertain times, we look forward once again to welcoming audiences back to our auditorium, and to showcasing some of the world’s greatest artists on our stages. Whatever the challenges before us, we are thrilled to offer some much-needed relief and delight to our audiences’.
Oliver Mears, Director of The Royal Opera said: ‘2020 has been a year of frustration and sadness for so many, but Christmas gives The Royal Opera the opportunity to offer our beloved audience and artists some real cheer. Our Christmas concerts, featuring the Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Opera House conducted by Mark Wigglesworth, together with our Jette Parker Young Artists and many special guests, will showcase many much-loved opera and festive favourites that will enthuse and enchant us as we hope for better times ahead.’
Kevin O’Hare, Director of The Royal Ballet, said: ‘The sprinkling of glitter that The Nutcracker brings into our lives seems especially welcome this year and we can’t wait for audiences to join us for an unforgettable festive treat. Peter Wright’s production is a joy and having our artistic staff and Will Tuckett shape the fun new additions is testament to how we can all pull together during challenging times to keep our important artforms flourishing.‘