The original story is darker
In the original fairy tale “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King,” written by E.T.A. Hoffmann, the story was much darker and bloodier than what you see in today’s ballet performances. Hoffmann aimed to portray the dark side of human nature and definitely did not create a story suitable for children. In fact, the battle between the mice and the soldiers was inspired by Napoleon’s invasion.
The heroine’s name changes depending on where you look
In Hoffmann’s original story, she was called Maria or Marie, who had a doll named Clara. In some German versions, she was called Marichen, and after World War I in Russia, she was renamed Masha.
Children initially played the roles
In the first performance of “The Nutcracker,” the roles of Clara and the Nutcracker Prince were played by children. In later, professional productions, these roles were assigned to adult dancers.
“The Nutcracker” was not immediately popular
When “The Nutcracker” was first performed in Russia in 1892, critics were not impressed, and the future of this ballet did not look bright. It wasn’t until George Balanchine’s production of the ballet in 1954 that the show began to gain popularity, becoming a holiday season staple by the late 1960s.
At the Croatian National Theatre in Osijek, the audience will have the opportunity to see a performance choreographed and directed by the prominent and internationally recognized choreographer Dinko Bogdanić, with set and costume design by the distinguished internationally acclaimed Neven Mihić, while the Maestro Filip Pavišić will conduct the performance.