Nutcracker by the numbers

We compare Chicago's six productions, sugar plums to sugar plums.

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LITTLE PRINCE An odd gift sparks Clara’s imagination in the Civic Ballet of Chicago’s production.

LITTLE PRINCE An odd gift sparks Clara’s imagination in the Civic Ballet of Chicago’s production. Photograph: Cheryl Mann


PLUM PAIR Act II’s royal couple in Ballet Chicago’s version.
Photo: Mark Niekrasz

Company
Ballet Chicago
Heroine
Marie Stahlbaum
Number of dancers playing her
2
Their average age
10
Cast size
116
Choreographer(s)
George Balanchine (Act II pas de deux), Patricia Blair, Daniel Duell
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Godfather
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
Yes
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Escort (Sugar Plum Fairy)
Mouse King’s cause of death
Shoe
Number of dancing Snowflakes
12
Number of dancing Flowers
15
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Polichinelles (19)
Setting
Germany, 1880s
Tree transformation
None
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
5

Company
Chicago Festival Ballet
Heroine
Clara Silberhaus
Number of dancers playing her
1
Their average age
14
Cast size
90
Choreographer(s)
Kenneth von Heidecke
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Uncle
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
Yes
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Sleigh
Mouse King’s cause of death
Sword
Number of dancing Snowflakes
26
Number of dancing Flowers
12
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Tarantella (16)
Setting
Germany, 1880
Tree transformation
Grows
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
45

Company
Civic Ballet of Chicago
Heroine
Clara Stahlbaum
Number of dancers playing her
1
Their average age
14
Cast size
70
Choreographer(s)
Birute Barodicaite and Dolores Long after Ruth Page
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Godfather
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
No
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Sleigh
Mouse King’s cause of death
Distracted by shoe, slain by sword
Number of dancing Snowflakes
14
Number of dancing Flowers
13
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Candy canes (6)
Setting
Germany, 1849
Tree transformation
Spins
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
40

Company
Hyde Park School of Dance
Heroine
Clara Stahlbaum
Number of dancers playing her
2
Their average age
12
Cast size
144
Choreographer(s)
Sarah Ford, Allyson Ratliff, Aimee Tye, August Tye
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Uncle
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
Yes
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Escort (Nutcracker Prince)
Mouse King’s cause of death
Sword
Number of dancing Snowflakes
11
Number of dancing Flowers
10
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Mother Ginger’s children (11)
Setting
United States, 1889
Tree transformation
Grows
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
8

Company
Joffrey Ballet
Heroine
Clara Stahlbaum
Number of dancers playing her
5
Their average age
24
Cast size
104
Choreographer(s)
Robert Joffrey, some scenes by Gerald Arpino
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Godfather
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
Yes
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Horseback
Mouse King’s cause of death
Sword
Number of dancing Snowflakes
12
Number of dancing Flowers
8
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Mother Ginger’s children (8)
Setting
United States, 1850s
Tree transformation
Grows
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
45

Company
Salt Creek Ballet
Heroine
Clara Stahlbaum
Number of dancers playing her
3 (Child Clara), 16 (Princess Clara)
Their average age
11 (Child Clara), 16 (Princess Clara)
Cast size
75
Choreographer(s)
Dace Dindonis, Sergey Kozadayev
Relation of Drosselmeyer to heroine
Godfather and uncle
Drosselmeyer wears an eyepatch
Yes
Method of transport to Kingdom of the Sweets
Boat
Mouse King’s cause of death
Distracted by shoe, slain by sword
Number of dancing Snowflakes
16
Number of dancing Flowers
11
Act II Allegro giocoso: characters and number
Bon Bons (8)
Setting
Germany, mid-1800s
Tree transformation
Grows
Ticket sales’ percentage of the company’s earned annual income
50

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