Mystic Ballet performs "A Mystic Nutcracker"

"The Nutcracker" is the dance world's version of Shakespeare's plays - meaning that the time-tested tale often gets a fresh twist in new productions.

Gregor Thieler has taken that tack with "A Mystic Nutcracker," from Mystic Ballet. (Thieler is Mystic Ballet's artistic director.) The production is still based on E.T.A. Hoffmann's story and uses Tchaikovsky's score, but it moves away from tradition in other regards. All the choreography from Thieler makes use of the modern artistry for which Mystic Ballet is known. Some dances will be set to contemporary holiday hits.

"A Mystic Nutcracker," which is staged at 2 p.m. on Saturdays from now through Dec. 18 at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum auditorium, promises illusions and effects, too. Tickets range from $15 to $40; (860) 536-3671 or

- Kristina Dorsey


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