On December 12 and 13, area audiences will have the opportunity to attend two separate productions of composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker: one performed by the professional dancers of Ballet Quad Cities (plus a few local performers), one performed by the student performers of RiverPointBallet (plus a professional dancer). And Ballet Quad Cities' Executive Director Joedy Cook is up-front about a large part of the holiday favorite's appeal: "For all ballet companies, Nutcracker is what really helps pay their bills. Nutcracker is the one ballet that you can count on to get an audience."
Yet as Cook well knows, that's not the reason that audiences themselves flock to The Nutcracker year after year. "It's truly the most recognizable music in the world," she says, "and that's because it's magical. And The Nutcracker itself is magical. It's magic, it's dreamy ... it's 'Calgon! Take me away!'"