Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Story

December 15, 2020

I find that this post is worthy of sharing not only on the pages of Facebook, where it was published earlier today, but also on this site.
I believe that the subject matter herein speaks to us all.

There is nothing more beautiful than ballet, with all the artforms that it involves… and at times like this, I think, nothing more beautiful than having Elizabeth Kaye talk about it.

The Music Center’s presentation of “The Unexpected History of The Nutcracker” did not disappoint!

Yesterday, the Center’s esteemed speaker Elizabeth Kaye delivered an uplifting and well-researched talk that confirms her status as a celebrated ballet historian.

Elizabeth Kaye with Susan Baumgarten, President of "Center Dance Arts" at The Music Center
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

It was an interesting and impressive choice to tell the Nutcracker story through a focus on its composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, revealing elements of his character, life and work process that went into creating his timeless masterpieces.

Given the fine and unprotected nature of this artistic genius who soars above others also classified as such, it may be no coincidence that the name Tchaikovsky is a derivative of the Russian word “tchaika”, which means “seagull”.  A bird is often a metaphor for a higher, finer vibrational state. Not only do birds fly above the ground we humans walk on, but it is also a known fact that birds sing within the highest frequency octaves of the human range.

As is often the case, the most beautiful things created in our visible world are “out of this world”. Extraordinary works are usually conceived through individuals who literally live in another realm, and see through an uncommon measure of perception. We can probably concur that it is no easy feat to bring such rarified forms of information through, from one dimension into another.

Waltz of the Snowflakes in the original 1892 production:

Yet for all our differences, we are all made of the human cloth, and Tchaikovsky’s story is a testament to the universality of the struggles we each face in our personal journeys.

And so, to present the history of the Nutcracker through such a tribute to its musical author — with appreciation of the angst and tribulations endured throughout the creative process that yielded this world treasure may be considered a most valued message.

A message most timely and eternally relevant, it also serves to encourage the importance of moving through our challenges, knowing that we are each here with a unique purpose and contribution.

share your thoughts!!

image sources: (1) snapshot of zoom presentation (2) (3)