Nutcracker ballet returns to Guelph

WELLINGTON COUNTY – After a two-year pandemic hiatus, Live at the Hippo Pool Events is renewing the Nutcracker tradition in Guelph.  Ballet Jörgen returns to River Run Centre on Thursday, December 22 and Friday, December 23 at 7:30 PM with performances of The Nutcracker – a Canadian Tradition.  

Ballet Jörgen’s quintessentially Canadian Nutcracker premiered in 2008 and continues to delight audiences year after year. 

Choreographed by Bengt Jörgen to Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s much-loved score, this re-working of the timeless classic is born from a collaboration with the world-renowned McMichael Canadian Art Collection.  The Nutcracker features as backdrops, three works by Canada’s 20th Century landscape artists- Franklin Carmichael’s Church and Houses at Bisset (1931), Tom Thomson’s Snow in the Woods (1916) and L.L. FitzGerald’s Trees and Wildflowers (1922).

 Set in the early 1900’s this homegrown Nutcracker brings to life the magical tale of a little girl’s Christmas dream and her grand journey through our northern landscapes filled with snowflakes, trilliums and creatures of the woods. 

In early September, young dancers from Guelph and surrounding communities auditioned for a variety of roles in this year’s Guelph performances. At those auditions, 19 local dancers were selected, representing 11 different dance schools in Guelph, Fergus, Acton, Kitchener and Waterloo.

Ballet Jörgen’s Nutcracker Youth Program provides young dancers with the opportunity to perform with a professional dance company and, for those considering a career in dance, “a valuable opportunity to experience the inner life and workings of a ballet company,” company officials state.

Founded in 1987, Ballet Jörgen is one of Canada’s largest dance companies and this country’s leading touring company. 

Ballet Jörgen reaches every province, bringing professional ballet to communities large and small, urban and rural. It is the only professional Canadian ballet company with a repertoire consisting exclusively of original works.  Receiving the 2011 National Arts Centre Award for Distinguished Contribution to Touring, Ballet Jörgen has since continued its leadership role in the development of touring by professional dancers and companies in Canada. Visit the company at their website

For the River Run performances, all seats are reserved. Adult tickets are $53/$48, senior tickets are $49/$44 and student tickets are $36/$31. Premier seating price is $73. Prices include HST; additional service charges may apply. Tickets are now on sale at River Run Centre Box Office at (519)763-3000 or 1-877-520-2408 or

In the spirit of seasonal giving, the community is invited to Share The Magic and support the work of Family and Children’s Services of Guelph and Wellington County. By pledging a ticket at the discounted price of $20, patrons can give a seat to a child or family who might otherwise not be able to share the Nutcracker magic. 

The box office is able to assist those wishing to give to Share The Magic.