Audiences throughout the world have long associated the fantasy féerie that is The Nutcracker with the magic of Christmas and New Year holidays. At any season, however, this ballet draws millions of admirers of the art of composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and choreographer Marius Ivanovich Petipa, thanks to whose collaboration we owe the existence of this renowned stage masterpiece. It is based on Hoffmann's German tale Nußknacker und Mausekönig, which details the victory of love over the powers of Evil. The choreographer Vasily Vainonen, who created his own version of The Nutcracker, conceived an ideal production for children, although adults, too, enjoy watching the story unfold. Tchaikovsky's enchanting music, the subtle psychology and the bold theatre directing together with the beautiful costumes and original pas performed by virtuoso dancers render this ballet one of the most well-loved and eagerly-anticipated productions of the theatre season.