Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's ballet The Nutcracker received a negative public reaction at its premiere at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg. How surprising that something that had such a disastrous first performance has since become recognised as one of the most popular and memorable ballets worldwide. Nowadays the major American ballet companies generate approximately 40% of ticket sales from the Nutcracker each year. The ballet is based on the fantasy tale by E.T.A. Hoffmann, about a nutcracker in the shape of a toy soldier that comes to life under a Christmas tree.
Decoration of the Christmas tree
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