Baltimore will get a welcome addition to this year's slate of holiday celebrations with the world premiere of a new Nutcracker at the Hippodrome.
This Nutcracker, which will draw on American history, was choreographed by Septime Webre, artistic director of the Washington Ballet. It will be at the Hippodrome for seven performances Dec. 2-5.
Webre's version will be set in a Washington mansion in 1882. In Clara's dream, the Nutcracker will resemble George Washington, and the Rat King may call to mind England's King George III. The great battle between the rats and the toys, of course, will feature Redcoats and the ragtag Continental Army.
In addition to the Washington Ballet's professional company, the Baltimore run will feature 33 children from Towson University's Children Dance Division as soldiers, small mice, bunnies, mushrooms, clowns, pages for the Sugar Plum Fairy, frontier girls and candy canes.
Show times are 10:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 2; 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 3; and 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4-5. Tickets cost $28-$69 and can be bought at the Hippodrome box office, 28 N. Eutaw St., online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 410-547-7328.
-- Mary Carole McCauley