Scattered Clouds 32° Good Evening
Scattered Clouds 32° Good Evening
EntertainmentLong Island Events

'Nutcracker' ballets performed across Long Island

The Seiskaya Ballet will perform

The Seiskaya Ballet will perform "The Nutcracker" at Stony Brook University between Dec. 12 and Dec. 20. Photo Credit: Handout

In a year when the economy turned even the warmth of summer into a cold, hard time, with penny-pinching consumers, cash-for-clunker cars and big and small business failures everywhere, Long Island's "Nutcrackers" stand ready to deliver music, dance - and most important - holiday magic at prices that won't make a massive dent in your holiday budget.

No cutbacks here - most productions boast scores of dancers, both professionals and students. Ballet Long Island has spiffed up its production with new costumes, choreography and special effects. Ovations Dance Academy features multicultural elements, including Balinese and Indian music, in its version. The Eglevsky Ballet hosts a gala party and master classes in conjunction with its Nutcracker at Tilles Center. And instead of cutbacks and closings, there's even a new full-length "Nutcracker" in East Hampton.

"The Nutcracker": evidence of the bounty of the season, indeed.


'The Nutcracker' in Rockville Centre: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 4; 5 p.m. Dec. 5; 4 p.m. Dec. 6 at South Side High School, 140 Shepherd St., Rockville Centre, 516-766-7171. Admission: $23 ($20 seniors and kids).

It may be Long Island's biggest "Nutcracker" bargain, but it's also a warm, homey, community affair: Leggz Ltd. Dance joins the Rockville Centre Guild for the Arts for a "Nutcracker" that features live music from the 70-piece South Shore Symphony Orchestra. Dancers from the Bolshoi, Boston and Joffrey ballets, as well as Alvin Ailey, Broadway's "Movin' Out" and other troupes, join more than 100 young performers from across the metro area. And, Rockville Centre's mayor and deputy mayor are in the show, too.

'The Nutcracker' in Southampton7 p.m. Dec. 4-5; 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at Southampton High School, 141 Narrow Lane, Southampton, 631-537-1684, Admission: $10-$15 ($8-$12 kids and seniors).

It takes two to pull off this production, as the Conservatory of Ballet and Danse Arts joins with the New York Dance Ensemble. Guest performer Darion Smith, founder of Janusphere Dance Company of New York, also danced with Dance Theater of Harlem.

'The Nutcracker' in Westbury: 7 p.m. Dec. 5; 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at Maguire Theater, SUNY Old Westbury, Route 107, Old Westbury, 631-586-2921. Admission: $30 ($25 kids under 16 and seniors).

Svetlana Caton-Noble, artistic director of Lumière Ballet, again promises a lush, traditional, full-length production of the Tchaikovsky classic.

'The Nutcracker' in Port Jefferson: 8 p.m. Dec. 4; 3 and 8 p.m. Dec. 5; 3 p.m. Dec. 6 at Earl L. Vandermeulen High School, 550 Scraggy Hill Rd., Port Jefferson, 631-331-3149. Admission: $20.

Harbor Ballet Theatre launched its production - once Long Island's eastern outpost of "Nutcrackers" - 18 years ago. The show features 80 performers; Harbor's production is open to anyone who wants to audition and includes young dancers from about a half dozen dance studios this year, along with a Sugar Plum who's an alumna of the home troupe.

'Clara's Dream: The Nutcracker' in Patchogue: 2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 5; 1 and 6 p.m. Dec. 6 at Patchogue Theatre, 71 E. Main St., Patchogue, 631-207-1313, Admission: $28 ($23 kids and seniors).

This full-length production, from American Dance Theatre of Long Island, has been in Patchogue since the turn of this century, and promises toys come to life and a tree that grows before the audience's wondering eyes.


'The Nutcracker' in Ronkonkoma: "The Nutcracker Act II": 10 and 11:30 a.m. Dec. 9 (Dec. 12 sold out) at Ballet Long Island, 1863 Pond Rd., Ronkonkoma, 631-737-1964. Admission: $18 ($8 kids and seniors).

This year, Ballet Long Island celebrates its 25th year with a spruced-up production including new costumes, updated choreography and special-effects surprises - and they hinted that snow's involved. A dozen professionals join 100 young dancers across the troupe's 11 performances at two venues.

'The Nutcracker Suite' in Patchogue: 2 p.m. Dec. 10 (one-hour performance for seniors, kids and the disabled); 1 and 7 p.m. Dec. 12; 1 p.m. Dec. 13 at Patchogue Theatre, 71 E. Main St., Patchogue, 631-207-1313, 631-218-0315 (group sales), Admission: $10-$26.

Ovations Dance Repertory Company's policy to broaden the "Nutcracker's" appeal to all audiences is reflected in a multicultural production that welcomes all dancers who audition. Performing with the troupe this year is Balam Dance Theatre, with a gamelan ensemble, which plays Balinese music; you'll also hear bhangra music and dance from India. The production celebrates its 10th year in Patchogue.

'The Nutcracker' in East Hampton: 7 p.m. Dec. 11; 1 and 7 p.m. Dec. 12; 2 p.m. Dec. 13 at John Drew Theater, Guild Hall, 158 Main St., East Hampton, 631-237-4810, Admission: $20 ($15 kids).

While the troupe has tackled parts of the "Nutcracker" previously, Hampton Ballet Theatre School this year for the first time mounts a full-length version, with about 75 students and 20 adults, including guest dancers. Among the lures here: hand-sewn costumes.

'The Nutcracker' in Stony Brook: 2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 12 and Dec. 19; 1 and 6 p.m. Dec. 13 and Dec. 20 at Staller Center, Stony Brook University, 631-632-ARTS, Admission: $34 ($29 kids under 12 and seniors).

Seiskaya Ballet's lavish production has been at its current venue since 1995, and this year features a guest soloist from the Estonian Ballet and the troupe's own award-winning dancers, all part of a company that numbers nearly 100. Kids can meet the dancers and get autographs after every matinee performance, and before and after the performance they can enjoy the wonder of two larger-than-life animated figures in the theater's lobby - Binky the toy solder and the Nutcracker himself.

'The Nutcracker' in Old Westbury2 and 6 p.m. Dec. 13 at Maguire Theater, SUNY Old Westbury, Route 107, Old Westbury, 516-484-6604, Admission: $30.

Dany Holdstein Dance Productions' full-length version of the classic has been on the boards since 1992 and features professionals from the New Jersey Ballet this year.


'The Nutcracker' in Hempstead: 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 18; noon and 5 p.m. Dec. 19-20 at John Cranford Adams Playhouse, Hofstra University, Hempstead, 631-462-0964, Admission: $35 ($28 kids and seniors); $18 for 11 a.m. performance only.

In its 28th season and laying claim to be the "largest Nutcracker on Long Island," Ohman's New York Dance Theatre promises more than two hours packed with dance. Guest artists from New York City Ballet, Momix and Dance Theatre of Harlem lead an 80-dancer troupe packed with added music, scenes and choreography in a production modeled after George Balanchine's.

The Nutcracker in a Nutshell' in Islip (50-minute version): 10 and 11:30 a.m. Dec. 16-17; full-length performances: 8 p.m. Dec. 18; 3 p.m. Dec. 19; 3 and 6 p.m. Dec. 20 at Islip Town Hall West, 401 Main St., Islip, 631-737-1964. Admission: $18 ($8 kids and seniors).

This year, Ballet Long Island celebrates its 25th year with a spruced-up production including new costumes, updated choreography and special-effects surprises - and they hinted that snow's involved. A dozen professionals join 100 young dancers across the troupe's 11 performances at two venues.

'The Nutcracker' in Brookville2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 19; 2 p.m. Dec. 20; 6 p.m. Dec. 21 at Tilles Center, C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, Route 25A, Brookville, 516-299-3100, Admission: $35-$60 ($32-$57 seniors).

Guest artists Violeta Angelova and Momchil Mladenov of the Suzanne Farrell Ballet Company lead 26 professionals and a troupe of young dancers in Eglevsky Ballet's production. This year, Marina Eglevsky, the Balanchine-trained daughter of the troupe's founder, will teach a master class in dance ($20, Dec. 14 at Herricks Community Center, New Hyde Park), and will be honored at a gala party after Sunday's performance at Tilles ($60, Dec. 20). Details for both special events at 516-746-1115 or


'Nutcracker' in Lindenhurst: 2 p.m. Saturdays through Dec. 19 at BroadHollow's Studio Theatre, 141 S. Wellwood Ave. Lindenhurst, 516-775-4420, Admission: $8.

The BroadHollow Theatre Company creates a child-friendly introduction to this classic holiday story by adding lyrics to the Tchaikovsky's music and skipping the dance.

'Clara's Dream: The Nutcracker' in Patchogue: 10 a.m. Dec. 4 at Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 E. Main St., Patchogue, 631-472-3455, Admission: $5 per child for school groups (chaperones free).

American Dance Theatre of Long Island trims its production to one hour for a "school show," promising preschool, kindergarten and elementary school groups plenty of holiday magic.

'The Nutcracker' in Westbury: 1 p.m. Dec. 12 at The Theatre at Westbury, Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury, 877-598-8694, Admission: $20 ($12 for kids under 12 at box office).

The Russian American Ballet features kids dancing the roles in a child-friendly version of this holiday story.

'The Nutcracker' in Hicksville: 3 p.m. Dec. 13 at Holy Trinity Diocesan High School, 98 Cherry Lane, Hicksville, 516-931-0338, Admission: $15.

Get in the holiday spirit with this narrated, hour-and-15-minute version presented by The Dance Place Inc. Local dancers from the community participate and, in the spirit of the season, a family who lost their home to fire will benefit from a portion of the proceeds of ticket sales, say organizers.


'George Balanchine's The Nutcracker': Through Jan. 3 at the David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center, Columbus Avenue at 63rd Street, Manhattan, 212-721-6500, Admission: $20-$130 ($190-$215 VIP).

The New York City Ballet's trademarked production remains the Rolls-Royce of Nutcrackers (with top prices to match), boasting a 40-foot-tall growing Christmas tree and a cast of more than 150 dancers and musicians, who are joined by gaggles of youngsters from The School of American Ballet.

'Nutcracker in the Lower': 7:30 p.m. Dec. 2-4, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 5 at Abrons Arts Center Henry Street Settlement, 466 Grand St., Manhattan, 212-352-3101, Admission: $20 ($15 each for four or more tickets).

Set on the Lower East Side of Manhattan and featuring krumping rats, salsa dancing and hip-hop steps, Urban Ballet Theater updates a holiday classic and brings it home to the neighborhood.

'The Klezmer Nutcracker': 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. weekends only Dec. 5-Jan. 3 at the Vital Theatre, 2162 Broadway at 76th Street, Manhattan, 212-579-0528, Admission: $25.

This production uses the classic Nutcracker tale as a springboard to the traditions of Hanukkah, with an enchanted Dreydl standing in for the usual Nutcracker.

'The Nutcracker': 7 p.m. Dec. 18; 2 and 7 p.m. Dec. 19; 2 p.m. Dec. 20 at Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, New York University, 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square South, Manhattan, 212-352-3101, Admission: $28-$48.

The Joffrey Ballet School presents its full-length version, decked out with glittering costumes and lavish scenery.


'The Nutcracker' in Flushing: 2 p.m. Dec. 13 at Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing. Admission is $15 ($12 kids), 718-463-7700, ext. 222,

1 and 4 p.m. Dec. 29-30 at Claire Schulman Playhouse/Main Stage, Queens Theatre in the Park, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Admission is $12, 718-760-0064,

Specially crafted for youngsters, these Ballet for Young Audiences productions introduce kids to the holiday tradition.

'The Nutcracker' in Flushing: 3 p.m. Dec. 20 at Colden Auditorium, Kupferberg Center at Queens College, Kissena Boulevard and Horace Harding Expressway, Flushing, 718-793-8080, Admission: $20 ($12 ages 12 and younger).

The Russian American Ballet presents its original rendition of this traditional classic.


'The Colonial Nutcracker': 2 p.m. Dec. 13 at Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts, 2900 Campus Rd. and Hillel Place, Brooklyn, 718-951-4500, Admission: $6.

This shortened and narrated version, from the Dance Theater of Westchester, is set in Colonial-era Yorktown and was created especially for kids 4 and older.

More Entertainment

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to Newsday is free for Optimum customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.