• December 11-27, 2015

    The Fox Theatre

Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker — December 11-27, 2015

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Choreographed by John McFall
Music by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Live with Atlanta Ballet Orchestra led by principal guest conductor Gary Sheldon

Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker choreographed by Artistic Director John McFall is the hallmark of the Atlanta holiday season, and this year marks its 20th anniversary at the Fox Theatre. Celebrate with us this December as we follow our favorite characters into a magical world where anything is possible!


Singing in Act I's "Snow Scene" by  Georgia Youth Choir


Run time is approximately 2 hours, including a 25-minute intermission.


"Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker Teaser 2015 (Atlanta Ballet);" video by Brian Wallenberg.
Featured photos: Peng Yu Chen as Female Meissen Doll, Tara Lee as Female Arabian, Alessa Rogers as Marya, Claire Stallman as Snow Queen, Rachel Van Buskirk as Dew Drop Fairy, Alexandre Barros as Nutcracker, Christian Clark as Cavalier, Jonah Hooper as Snow King and Male Arabian, Jared Tan as Male Meissen Doll, and Drew Thomas as Drosselmeyer. Photos by Charlie McCullers.

The Fox Theatre

The Fox Theatre is Atlanta’s most opulent historic landmark and a nationally acclaimed theatre.

Location and Parking
The Fox Theatre is located at 660 Peachtree Street at the intersection of Ponce de Leon Avenue and Peachtree Street.  Parking for the theatre is available in a variety of lots within a four-block radius.  Parking prices range from $4 - $15.  Preferred parking for Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker is located at the Bank of America Plaza Parking Garage at 600 Peachtree St. Atlanta, GA 30308.  The parking garage is situated one block south of the Fox Theatre.  The garage provides safe and secured covered parking for all patrons going to Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker and other area events. To reserve your parking space for the day of the event please click here.  The pre-paid parking charge is $11.50, which includes all taxes and fees.  The Fox Theatre is also easily accessible via the North Avenue MARTA rail station.

Bank of American Plaza 

Emergency Phone Number
(404) 881-2100 is the emergency number for the Fox Theatre.  Please leave your seat location with your babysitter or answering service so that an usher may reach you in case of an emergency.

Special Needs
Phonic Ear Easy Listening System headsets are available in the Fox Theatre lobby.  Headsets are free and available on a first-come, first-served basis.  Assistance is also available for patrons who need help upon arrival at the Fox Theatre.  For more information, please call (404) 881-2100.

The Fox Theatre

Community and Corporate Group Tickets

It only takes 10 people to benefit from Atlanta Ballet's Group Sales program.  With our fast, friendly and convenient service, you can secure the best seats in the house in no time at all. Groups save up to 30% off regular prices!

Click here for details and to submit a request to Myredith Gonzales, Group Sales Manager.

Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education's Kids In Step for School Groups

The Centre for Dance Education's Kids In Step program is designed to bring dance to the school-age child.  For more information on weekday performances for accredited school groups and registered home schools, please visit our Kids In Step page.

Get a behind-the-scenes peek at The Nutcracker

For many people, seeing a performance of The Nutcracker is a holiday tradition, and none of us can escape the music once the Christmas season cranks up. The Atlanta Ballet invited Weekend Express behind the scenes of its production at the historic Fox Theater.

Review: “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker” sparkles with flair and energy as a holiday must-see

In some cities The Nutcracker tastes like stale fruitcake: a necessary holiday staple endured for the sake of tradition. Thankfully, Atlanta can breathe a peppermint-scented sigh of relief. Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker, this time around, is as fresh as a just-cut spruce tree, as comforting and sweet as warm apple cider... It was the strongest Nutcracker I’ve seen in years. Joyously danced by Atlanta Ballet company members and students alike...

Atlanta Ballet Artistic Director Says Goodbye After 20 Years

After 21 impressive years transforming the Atlanta Ballet into one of the world’s most celebrated dance companies, Artistic Director John McFall will drop the curtain on his tenure in June 2016. In this exclusive interview, the acclaimed dancer, choreographer and director walked down memory lane with Where and discussed why the arts should play more of a leading role in children’s educations. Catch McFall’s final "Nutcracker" through Dec. 27 at The Fox Theatre.

Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker Creator Looks Back On Celebrated Production

Good Day Atlanta's Paul Milliken stopped by the Fox Theatre to chat with Mr. McFall and look back on his long, storied history with "Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker."

Interview with Atlanta Ballet's Jackie Nash

Jackie Nash from the Atlanta Ballet came by the station to discuss her life as a dancer and The Nutcracker.

Atlanta Ballet Talks about the Nutcracker the Day before Opening Night

Todd Schnick and Bryan Nonni are joined on the Atlanta Real Estate Forum Radio show by Jonah Hooper, a company dancer with the Atlanta Ballet. The trio discusses the Atlanta Ballet, the upcoming opening night of The Nutcracker, intimate details about the production of The Nutcracker and upcoming events for the Atlanta Ballet in 2016.

Art & Culture: En Pointe

The Atlantan Magazine highlights Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker in the December issue (page 75).

My City: Curtain Call

The Atlantan Magazine features John McFall and his favorite things in Atlanta for its December issue (page 34).

Preview: “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker” ushers in the final season under John McFall

ArtsATL recently sat down with John Welker and Tara Lee, the two company dancers who have been with McFall the longest — Welker is beginning his 21st year; Lee, her 20th season. They discussed how they found out about McFall’s retirement, his impact on their careers and the company’s resolve to make this season a gift to him.

They also discuss the challenges of Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker, which is choreographed by McFall and runs through December 27. 

John McFall produces his last Atlanta Ballet ‘Nutcracker’

It is fitting that the largest public celebration currently planned during McFall’s last season takes place around “The Nutcracker.” His first full-length ballet during his initial year as director, the production has provided essential thrust as the organization has reached new heights in revenues, infrastructure and artistic quality under his watch.

Preview: Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker

Also making a role debut this year is Yoomi Kim, who will be dancing the Sugar Plum Fairy. “This has been my dream role since I was a little kid,” she says, “I used to watch The Nutcracker with my parents during the Christmas season and I was fascinated by the magical Sugar Plum’s kingdom. Ever since I started dancing the role, my love for Sugar Plum has grown deeper.”

Atlanta Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” at The Fox

A magic handkerchief, dancing life-sized dolls, a hand-carved gift that comes to life, and an enchanted trip through the snow to the Land of the Sweets…what more could a young girl want on Christmas Eve?  And what more could Atlanta ask for?  Maybe a theatre that evokes an evening in Morocco, with a star-studded sky and clouds borne by invisible winds? A snow storm inside the theatre?  An orchestra made up of some of the region’s best musicians? Christmas melodies played on an enormous pipe organ? Good acting and even better dancing?  The Atlanta Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” offered these and more on opening night at the Fabulous Fox.

Review: The magic of “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker” remains its ability to spin an enchanting tale

Individual performances were spectacularly moving; it seems Atlanta Ballet’s core company members continue to grow in artistry. As Marya, Nash made a major impression in her first starring role as a member of the lead cast (there are four different casts in this year’s production). Nash rose to the moment, showcasing the spunk and ebullience needed to carry Act I. From the moment she galumphed like a tomboy into her new party dress to the instant she stabbed the Rat King and toppled him with her index finger, she was resolute and radiant — equal parts intelligence and humor.

Preview: Peng-Yu Chen overcomes injury and loss to return as Atlanta Ballet’s Snow Queen

For Chen, this year’s Nutcracker holds special significance — exactly two years ago she was injured mid-performance as she danced the marquee role of the Snow Queen. She hobbled off stage, suddenly faced with the harrowing prospect she might never return.

Ballerina steps up as holiday classic sets higher bar

When Atlanta Ballet’s “Nutcracker” makes its annual run at the Fox Theatre beginning Dec. 11, Felder will debut in two featured roles: the child heroine, Marya, and the sultry Arabian dancer.

It’s a step up for Felder within the ballet’s tiered system of roles that challenge dancers at successive levels. Like Felder, dancers across the metro area are rising from angels to party children, soldiers to flowers, and Dew Drops to Sugar Plum Fairies.

Review: For “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker,” the beauty of the dance makes the gift

For the entire company, praise is undoubtedly deserved. Atlanta Ballet is knee deep in exceptional talent. And judging by the technical prowess of even the youngest cast member, the Centre for Dance Education is clearly doing its job.

Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker soars at the Fox in Atlanta

Overall, the Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker is quintessentially seasonal, wonderfully produced and is the perfect holiday outing for your family.

Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker Returns to the Fabulous Fox Theatre for its 54th Season

Whether you are 10, 30, or 60, the whimsy and fantasy of the Atlanta Ballet’s The Nutcracker appeals to the child in all of us. If you haven’t already, grab a friend or your family and go see this show before it leaves the Fox Theater on December 29.

Dance Review: Atlanta Ballet’s ‘The Nutcracker’

I must tell you I was quite transported:  I had a fifth row center seat (heaven); the proximity to all that magic, fantasy, music, and superb dancing becomes hypnotic, almost an out-of-body experience.  You want to get in touch with your inner child?  This is the place.  It matters not if you’ve seen it once, 50 times, or never.  You think you’re not a dance fan?  Go and surprise yourself.  This may sound corny, but I’m very grateful to live in a city that offers such glorious entertainment.

Review: Exquisite dancing is real magic in sumptuously successful “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker”

No small feat, but with “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker,” Atlanta Ballet, in its 53rd annual staging of the Tchaikovsky classic, has found its greatness. The performance is not without flaw, but missteps are diluted by the general merriment, and at times they feel almost endearing. Like a house full of relatives visiting for Christmas, the piece is wonderfully exuberant, if occasionally overwhelming. With a host of characters — some cute, some intriguing, some just strange — the whole thing is so much fun that you quickly forgive the frenzy and join in the festivities.

Preview: A new bag of magical tricks for this year's "Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker" at the Fox

McFall has entirely reimagined Act I but is hesitant to give away too much — he wants the new dances and the illusions to be a surprise. He alludes to flying handkerchiefs, dolls that magically appear from thin air, and a dramatic transformation of the boy Nutcracker into the grown Nutcracker. Integrating the illusions into the storyline was of paramount importance to both Thomas and McFall.

Review: Atlanta Ballet’s "Nutcracker" enchants audiences at breathless, 21st-century pace

In the midst of the holiday rush, it's comforting to step into the Fox Theatre for Atlanta Ballet's "Nutcracker" and to see the snow-laden evergreens and rounded minarets of the Petrov family's 19th-century Russian home. It's enchanting to peer through a lattice of winter branches into its picture window. There's a feeling of nostalgia, a moment to slow down, take a deep breath and prepare to be transported to the age of old-world classical story ballets - a time when people traveled by horse and carriage or sleigh, pocket watches ticked and ballets lasted four to five hours.

It’s not an illusion: Magician to dance key part in ‘Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker’

Illusionist Drew Thomas was so pumped about beginning rehearsals for “Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker” that he wore a Victorian magician’s costume all the way from Jamaica, where he had been staging his long-running show on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, to Atlanta earlier this month.

Behind the Scenes of The Nutcracker

It's considered a staple of the holidays. The Atlanta Ballet is currently presenting its 52nd annual "Nutcracker Ballet" on stage at the Fox Theatre. FOX 5's Deidre Dukes received a behind the scenes look on Thursday!


Innovative choreography Family enjoyed it immensely Fox always a special venue.


The Fox is the most magnificent theater I have ever been in! I am still sharing photographs with friends and encouraging them to go when in Atlanta. The performance was exceptional and I recommend it as a Christmas "must see".

Fun Christmas outing

I took my 5 daughters for a fun Christmas outing. The changes to the second act were disappointing. Missed the emphasis on the Nutcracker and the Rat King, and the dream sequence. However, it was still a very good performance and we enjoyed it very much.

Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker

I lived in Boston for 30 years and started a tradition with my daughter to attend every year at the Boston ballet's Nutcracker as our Christmas treat together. My daughter is grown now and lives in Atlanta so she surprised me with tickets to this production on December 27, 2015. We were both so disappointed that it was dramatically different from the original story. The Nutcracker looked scary and never became the Prince. Clara (her name was changed) killed the Rat prince and danced with her godfather rather than the Nutcracker. The costumes were ok but not great. The Russian dancers were silly, like court jesters. The Arabian dancers were magnificent as was the Sugar Plum Fairy and Snow Queen. Loved the live orchestra and the children's chorus but please bring back the original story with the Nutcracker as the hero...that's why its called the Nutcracker!


I gave my daughters a choice Nutcracker or Christmas Carol. They choose Nutcracker. Now I remember why - the costumes are beautiful. It has been a couple of years since we last attended but there we're a couple of things that were different which made the production not earn a five. Two obvious differences were the inclusion of a large number of small children and the randomness of the second act. Did we miss something or was the focus clearly taken away from the gift of the nutcracker. Bring back the original version.

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John McFall

John McFall studied dance with Ms. Tatiana Dokoudovska, who not only taught him the art of dance, but also inspired him to pursue an adventurous life in theater. At sixteen, he was contracted to dance at Starlight Theater, one of the showcase summer stock venues in the country. Following this, he performed with San Francisco Ballet for two decades, working with distinguished choreographers and touring the world. John became recognized as a choreographer himself and was commissioned to create premieres for a variety of companies, including San Francisco Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem, and National Ballet of Canada. Mikhail Baryshnikov invited John to create two works for American Ballet Theater in which Mikhail also performed. In 1986, John received an invitation from Robert Barnett, artistic director of Atlanta Ballet, to premiere a work titled Watchers. Eight years later, John would become artistic director. John has continued to contribute to the Atlanta Ballet repertoire with family classics such as Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Swan Lake, Firebird, and Don Quixote. Notably, he has expanded the range of the repertoire with invitations to many of the world’s most provocative and imaginative choreographers. These individuals include Wayne McGregor, Jorma Elo, Ohad Naharin, David Bintley, Christopher Wheeldon, James Kudelka, and Twyla Tharp. John is committed to continue leading Atlanta Ballet into the future with innovative and extraordinary works. By commissioning brilliant choreographers and nurturing the development of new talent, he will ensure that for generations to come Atlanta Ballet will present evenings of dance that touch the soul and engage the imagination. Simply put, to INSPIRE.






Photo by Charlie McCullers.

Gary Sheldon

Principal Guest Conductor

Gary Sheldon was recently appointed principal guest conductor for Atlanta Ballet. In this, his fifth season with the Company, he returns to conduct Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker. His distinguished career has included positions with San Francisco Ballet, Ballet Met, and Miami City Ballet, where he currently serves as principal conductor. He has guest conducted for Alberta Ballet, Delta Festival Ballet, Hartford Ballet, New Orleans Ballet, and the Norwegian Ballet in Oslo. Maestro Sheldon recently won the American Prize in Orchestral Conducting for recordings with Lancaster Festival Orchestra at the Lancaster Festival in Ohio, where he is artistic director. He is also principal conductor at the Festival at Sandpoint in Idaho. He has held conducting positions with the New Orleans Symphony, Spoleto Festival, Syracuse Opera Theatre, and Marin Symphony in California, where he served as music director and, in 1996, won the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Marin Cultural Center and Museum. He is a native of Bay Shore, N.Y., and a graduate of the Juilliard School.








Photo courtesy of garysheldon.com.

Peter Doll

Peter Doll was born in Ithaca, NY and began his training with his mother and aunt at the Ithaca Ballet. After further study at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, under the direction of Marcia Dale Weary, he moved to Miami, Fla. to study with Truman Finney, Geta Constantinescu, and Carter Alexander at Miami City Ballet School. He went on to dance with Miami City Ballet for three seasons and has also been a member of Wonderbound (formerly Ballet Nouveau Colorado) and the Suzanne Farrell Ballet.

Nathan Griswold

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Nathan Griswold began his dance training under Kay Englert in Tacoma, Washington. After finishing his formal dance training at the Ben Stevenson Academy in Houston, Texas, he danced professionally with the Houston Ballet, Alberta Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, and as a guest with Los Angeles Chamber Ballet and North Carolina Dance Theater. In 2010 Nathan moved to Germany to dance for Ballet Augsburg and the National Theater Mannheim. His choreographic works have been performed by Ballet Augsburg, the Augsburg Opera, State Theater of Ulm, and Atlanta Ballet's Wabi Sabi. Upon returning to Atlanta in 2014, Nathan co-founded Fly on a Wall, a physical theater and installation company. With his colleagues, Nathan has been creating diverse work using different mediums and performance genres. He is excited to, once again, join Atlanta Ballet at the Fox Theatre for its 2015 production of The Nutcracker.

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Book a Winter Service with Spa Sydell
Spa Sydell is offering a variety of winter services to Atlanta Ballet patrons that will help you unwind during the busy month of December. When combined with Atlanta Ballet's Nutcracker tickets, Spa Sydell gift certificates make great presents for those special people on your holiday shopping list! Click here for more information!

Need a Ride to Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker?

Uber is giving you $20 off your first ride with promo code Nutcracker2015. Uber is an app that connects you with a driver at the touch of a button. Learn more here.

Try UberEATS & Save 50% on Your First 2 Orders!
Atlanta Ballet and UberEATS have partnered to offer Atlanta Ballet patrons a discount on their first UberEATS orders. Sign up today and start saving! Use promo code EATSATLDANCE here.

*Restrictions: Max $10 discount per order, valid in Atlanta only, new users only & expires 1/8/2016.