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Prime Minister Janez Janša as honorary patron of The Nutcracker

On 23 December, which marks Constitution Day, the Ljubljana Opera and Ballet will perform a holiday classic, the ballet The Nutcracker – A Christmas Carol by choreographer Youri Vámos with music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. The honorary patron of the performance, dedicated to the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU, is the Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša.

The performances on 22 and 23 December will feature guest soloists Natascha Mair and Patrik Holeček

The performances on 22 and 23 December will feature guest soloists Natascha Mair and Patrik Holeček | Author Darja Štravs Tisu

Each year, the ballet performance of The Nutcracker – A Christmas Carol attracts curious children and their parents wishing to see "a sparkly snow-covered, charming, merry and enthralling fairy tale" in the festive season. One of the most beautiful ballet fairy tales – conceived by the librettist Marius Petipa after Dumas’s adaptation of Hoffman’s The Nutcracker and the Mouse King – was enhanced by the Hungarian choreographer and director with the timeless story A Christmas Carol, written by Charles Dickens.

"We cannot imagine December without The Nutcracker, since it is that holiday classic that draws in crowds to our theatre in autumn already and is memorable for both children and their parents," said Theatre Director Staš Ravter, commenting on the sold-out performances of The Nutcracker in December and early January.

Thursday’s performance of The Nutcracker will be the 158th performance of this classic at the Ljubljana Opera and Ballet since its premiere in 2002. At the invitation of Ballet Artistic Director Renato Zanella, the performances on 22 and 23 December will feature guest soloists Natascha Mair, principal with the English National Ballet, and Patrik Holeček, principal with the Czech National Ballet.

In addition to the ballet soloists, the ballet ensemble, the women’s chorus and the orchestra, the performance also features pupils of the Ljubljana Music and Ballet Conservatory. The set and costumes adapted by the Slovenian National Theatre’s studio come from the Hannover GmbH state theatre in Lower Saxony.