Many of us are trying to figure out what to do about this year’s holiday season. All those traditions so beloved and so enjoyed in past years — how do we keep those going under our current conditions?
For many families, there’s a particular tradition — attending a production of The Nutcracker — that’s unlikely to happen exactly as it has before.
But ballet companies have gone into problem-solving mode as they try different approaches, including virtual and drive-in performances. There’s even a crowdsourced Nutcracker that the public is being invited to make creative contributions to.
All of that is in keeping with the story I tell in my nonfiction picture book The Nutcracker Comes to America: How Three Ballet-Loving Brothers Created a Holiday Tradition, which was illustrated by Cathy Gendron and published in 2015 by Millbrook Press/Lerner Publishing.
The resourcefulness on display in the first-ever full-length U.S. production of The Nutcracker — put on in San Francisco by the Utah-born Christensen brothers during the trying circumstances of World War II — is both amusing and inspiring, and I figure both qualities are welcome right now.
That’s why I’ve recorded myself reading The Nutcracker Comes to America for this video that I’m sharing on YouTube for the next two weeks. I hope you’ll enjoy it.