Following its recent announcement to cancel this year’s run The Nutcracker performances due to the effects of COVID-19, Atlanta Ballet has released details on the alternative ways audiences will be able to experience the magic of The Nutcracker this holiday season. From a drive-in viewing event at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and on-demand access to a previously-recorded version of the production, to sharing short excerpts from past performances and exclusive dancer insights on social media, audiences will have the opportunity to get a daily dose of Nutcracker joy from Thanksgiving to Christmas Day.
“We are so grateful for the ongoing support of so many families in our community who come to see Atlanta Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker every December, so we had to come up with some exciting new approaches to keep this beloved tradition alive,” said Artistic Director Gennadi Nedvigin. “While we aren’t able to gather in the theatre this year, we are excited to connect with audiences in a variety of virtual ways.”
The Nutcracker 2020 Experience includes the following:
The Nutcracker Drive-In Experience – December 2-6, 2020
o For five nights in December, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre’s surface lot will be transformed into a pop-up drive-in movie theatre, where audiences can enjoy a filmed version of Atlanta Ballet’s newest production of The Nutcracker from the comfort of their own cars.
o Viewers will be able to pre-order special Nutcracker-themed concessions and gift items to further elevate their Nutcracker experience.
o Cobb Energy Performance Centre’s roundabout will be converted into a festive marketplace, featuring tents for concessions and an on-site souvenir boutique. Masks will be required, and the area will be monitored by designated “Social Distance Ambassadors” to keep guests safe and six feet apart.
o Tickets will be on-sale on October 5, 2020, at10 a.m. General admission tickets are $100 per car, with premium front-row parking at $150. Spaces are limited, so early purchases are encouraged.
The Nutcracker On-Demand – November 16-December 27, 2020
o Audiences will have the opportunity to bring the magic of The Nutcracker into their own living rooms by ordering an on-demand presentation that can be streamed onto any computer or television screen. The link will be live for 72 hours after purchase, giving busy families the flexibility to enjoy the performance at their convenience. On-demand access will be available in mid-November.
30 Days of FREE Nutcracker Content – November 26-December 25, 2020
o To ensure that Atlanta Ballet followers get their Nutcracker fix, Atlanta Ballet will be sharing Nutcracker-inspired content on its Facebook and Instagram channels every day from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Through dancer takeovers, character story times, unveiled behind-the-scenes secrets, and virtual classes that will give families the chance to learn portions of choreography featured in The Nutcracker’s famous party scene, a little bit of The Nutcracker will come to life throughout the holiday season.
This year would have been the debut of Atlanta Ballet’s The Nutcracker at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, after more than two decades at the Fox Theatre. Described as “one of the most entertaining [Nutcrackers] out there” by The Washington Post following last year’s Washington D.C. debut at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, this innovative production, which premiered in Atlanta in 2018, features larger-than-life sets and bold costumes enhanced by striking video projections, created by a world-class creative team that includes Tony Award-winning and – nominated designers.
“While we are disappointed that we are unable to premiere our fabulous new production of The Nutcracker at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre this year as previously planned, we are undaunted in our mission to provide our audiences with the best possible alternative in these challenging times,” said Arturo Jacobus, President & CEO of Atlanta Ballet. “Our drive-in Nutcracker experience at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, our on-demand performance viewing option, and our ‘30 Days of Nutcracker’ series on social media are all designed to help our community experience a holiday season of joy, as we have for the past 60 years.”
For more information, visit Atlanta Ballet’s website. To see updates about The Nutcracker and Atlanta Ballet’s revised 20|21 Performance Season in real time, follow Atlanta Ballet on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Photo: Gene Schiavone