The first notes of the Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies immediately transport me into the Christmas spirit. Indianapolis is lucky to have many area shows that display this holiday classic in many different ways. Enjoy lavish costumes, dancers of all ages and skill levels, and the work of many Indianapolis dance troops with performances all across the Indianapolis area or throughout the Midwest if you are traveling! No matter whether it is your first time viewing the Nutcracker or an annual family tradition, there is always something new to watch in this beloved ballet. Enjoy these shows, including some that are targeted towards different ages and attention spans!

Clowes Hall, Butler University Ballet
November 30 – December 2

The grand holiday tradition continues as Butler Ballet proudly presents the only fully staged production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker in central Indiana.  Be dazzled and delighted by spectacular dancing, beautiful costumes, glorious scenery, and pyrotechnical magic as the brilliance of Tchaikovsky’s music is brought to life by the Butler Symphony Orchestra and the Indianapolis Children’s Choir under the direction of Richard Auldon Clark.

Get your tickets today!

November Shows

Carmel Barnes and Noble
November 4, Noon

Cast members of Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre’s contemporary Nutcracker can be seen in costume throughout Barnes and Noble on Saturday November 4 at noon! This modern version of the classic tale will come to life during story time at 1 pm.

Central Library- The Indianapolis Public Library
November 11, 3 pm

The Indianapolis School of Ballet presents “The Nutcracker: Short and Suite” at the Central Library’s Clowes Auditorium Sunday, November 11 at 3 pm.  Ideal for families and children of all ages, children are invited to wear comfortable clothes or tutus and join a mini-ballet lesson after the performance. This preview is perfect for younger children or those who get a little wiggly during long shows.

Murat Theatre at the Old National Centre
November 26, 3 pm

The Moscow Ballet’s production of the Great Russian Nutcracker is on Sunday, November 26 at 3 pm. This traditional production combines over 40 professional dancers with local student dancers for a breathtaking show filled with costumes, gorgeous scenery, and Russian folklore. Tickets start at $28 per person.

Zionsville Public Library-Hussey Mayfield Memorial Public Library
November 29, 10:45 am 

From 10:45 AM – 11:15 AM on November 29, children ages 3-12 are invited to listen to The Nutcracker, take pictures and dance with the characters! Performed by the Central Indiana Dance Ensemble, spots are very limited, so register beginning on November 11 at 8AM.

Butler University Ballet at Clowes Hall
November 30-December 3

Presented by the Butler Ballet, with music by the Butler Ballet Orchestra and the Indianapolis Children’s Choir, this is the only full staged production of the Nutcracker in Indianapolis. Shows run from November 30-December 3.  Older children and teens may enjoy attending the evening shows, offered each night. This classic performance of Tchaikovsky’s music includes pyrotechnical magic and was my favorite performance growing up.

December Shows

Pike Performing Arts Center
December 1 & 2

The Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre presents The Nutcracker on December 1 & 2. A full-length modern rendition of the holiday classic, this show seeks to tell the true meaning of the season through the gift and giving spirit of a homeless man. Tickets are $15 for students/seniors and $25 for adults.

Monon Community Center East
December 3 at 1 pm and 3 pm

The Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation Adaptive Program and Village Dance Studio come together for Nutcracker Short and Suite, an hour long program, geared towards individuals with disabilities to attend. This performance has fewer lights, softer music, and a dance space will be open for those who want to dance along! Scheduled for December 3 at 1 pm and 3 pm, youth tickets are $5 and adult tickets are $10.

 

Noblesville Library
December 4, 10:30 am

In conjunction with the Ballet Theater of Indiana, the Noblesville library also shares the Nutcracker in this special story time designed for those aged 3 and up and their caregivers. Scheduled for Monday, December 4 from 10:30am-11am, this weekday activity is perfect for the wiggliest, giggliest of children who want to experience a visit from Nutcracker ballerinas.

 

Indianapolis Public Library
beginning December 6, various times and locations

Held at various locations and times starting on Wednesday, December 6, young ones ages 3 and older are invited for a special ballet story time with the Ballet Theatre of Indiana, featuring some of the Nutcracker story, based on E.T.A. Hoffman’s work, and a short ballet lesson. This program is offered at the College Avenue Branch, the East 38 Street Branch, the Lawrence Branch, the Nora Branch, and the Pike Branch.

 

Indianapolis Museum of Art
December 14-17

Held in the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s Toby Theatre, the Indiana Ballet Conservatory presents their traditional take on the Nutcracker from December 14-17. This variation is closest to the original Nutcracker Ballet that debuted over 100 years ago in Russia and is based on the 1934 choreography of Vasily Vainonen. Classical ballet lovers and teens will love this performance but it is open to children and adults of all ages.

 

Zionsville Performing Arts Center
December 15-17

Join the Central Indiana Dance Ensemble at the Zionsville Performing Arts Center on December 15 at 7:30 pm, December 16 at 2 pm and 7:30 pm, and December 17 at 2 pm. In addition to these performances, a Sugar Plum Fairy Dessert Party is held at 12:30 pm before each of the matinee performances. For an additional $12 per person, have a treat, make a craft, hear a story, and have your picture taken in Clara’s sleigh. Youth tickets are $18 and adult tickets are $25.

 

Dale E. Graham Auditorium at Carmel High School
December 17 at 2  pm

The Ballet Theater of Carmel at Performer’s Edge brings their rendition of the Nutcracker to Carmel High School Saturday, December 16th at 7:30  pm and Sunday, December 17 at 2 pm. Tickets will be available to purchase beginning at 12 pm on November 4.

 

Basile Theatre at the Historic Athenaeum
December 21-24

Have dinner at the adjoining Rathskeller restaurant or a beverage at Coat Check Coffee and then join the Ballet Theater of Indiana for their seven performances of the Nutcracker from December 21-24. Shows run on December 21 at 2 and 7:30 pm, December 22 at 2 and 7:30 pm, December 23 at 2 and 7:30 pm, and December 24 at 3 pm. This retelling of the Nutcracker is fun for the whole family and brings Clara’s adventure to life! Tickets are priced at $25 but are available through our Groupon affiliate for $17.

Murat Theater at the Old National Centre

Joined by dancers from the new professional Indianapolis Ballet and accompanied by the Indianapolis Ballet Orchestra, the Indianapolis School of Ballet celebrates their 11 year of performing the Nutcracker.  Shows are Thursday, Dec. 21 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 22 at 2 p.m., Friday, Dec. 22 at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 23 at 3 p.m. Child and senior tickets range from $15-$75 and adult tickets are priced at $20-$80. This should be a great show for dance and music fans who love classic ballet!

Venturing out of Indianapolis during this holiday season? There are many neighboring cities with their own productions this season. View shows in Muncie, Lafayette (performances in January 2018), Evansville, Bloomington, Fort Wayne, Merrillville, Elkhart, and South Bend.  Going outside of Indiana? There are great options in Chicago (performed by the famous Joffrey Ballet), Cincinnati, Louisville, Columbus, and Dayton.

Murat Theater at the Old National Centre
December 21-23

Joined by dancers from the new professional Indianapolis Ballet and accompanied by the Indianapolis Ballet Orchestra, the Indianapolis School of Ballet celebrates their 11 year of performing the Nutcracker.  Shows are Thursday, December 21 at 7:30 pm, Friday, December 22 at 2 pm, Friday, December 22 at 7:30 pm, and Saturday, December 23 at 3 pm. Child and senior tickets range from $15-$75 and adult tickets are priced at $20-$80. This should be a great show for dance and music fans who love classic ballet!

Venturing out of Indianapolis during this holiday season? There are many neighboring cities with their own productions this season. View shows in Muncie, Lafayette (performances in January 2018), Evansville, Bloomington, Fort Wayne, Merrillville, Elkhart, and South BendGoing outside of Indiana? There are great options in Chicago (performed by the famous Joffrey Ballet), Cincinnati, Louisville, Columbus, and Dayton.