It was a night full of sugar plum fairies, snowflakes, and even a giant rat king. The Nutcracker has completely enchanted me since I was a little girl, yet I love it even more as an adult.

I arrived at the Keller Auditorium in Portland on Sunday afternoon- which is a wonderful venue, because there’s not a bad seat in the house- and enjoyed an afternoon full of exquisite dancing and a heartfelt story. I was incredibly impressed by the set design of this particular Nutcracker, as it was very intricate. As the children peered through the front door of the house on this set, you could see through it and gaze at the brightly-colored Christmas tree, as well as all the contents of the house. This show also incorporated a tiny yet extravagent boat, which transported the children to and from their dreamland. Not to mention, snow! At least a dozen dancers floated through snowflakes during one portion of the show, which was very impressive. The costumes were gorgeous as well. Many incorporated flowy skirts with brightly colored sequins and sparkles, in addition to the traditional tutu (of course).

I think my favorite part of this show was watching the faces of all the guests as they left the auditorium. All the children, decked out in their holiday gear, were beaming. They even seemed to have an extra sparkle in their eye. The adults also seemed to be enchanted, they looked as though they had been transported back to childhood, just for a moment, and remembered what it had been like to dream of dancing candy canes and toys coming to life. Because of this, I believe the Nutcracker was the perfect addition to my holiday celebration.

Happy Holidays!
~Ashley Moran

Editor’s Note: For more information on the Nutcracker, and future shows at The Keller Auditorium, please visit

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