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New Haven Ballet is pleased to announce our return to The Shubert Theatre New Haven to perform The Nutcracker on December 17, 18 & 19, 2021.

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Auditions for The Nutcracker will occur on September 25-26, 2021 for students enrolled in Levels 2-8.


While New Haven Ballet has not performed live in a theater since December 2019, we have worked tirelessly to provide students with performing opportunities via film. This year we are returning to The Shubert Theatre New Haven to once again perform The Nutcracker live. Due to the pandemic, we are faced with new challenges and restrictions with which we must abide in order for us to do so.

Like theaters across the United States, The Shubert requires that all performers be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This means all students and staff at New Haven Ballet must be vaccinated in order to be backstage and perform in the theater.

Non-vaccinated children and adults are, however, permitted to attend performances following audience guidelines. New Haven Ballet will share these audience parameters as we get closer to the performances.

I understand how disappointing this news feels. It means a large number of you will not have a chance to perform live on stage this year.

Still, we would like to include some non-vaccinated students who are interested in the production. To that end, we will be holding auditions for students in Levels 2-5 who are not vaccinated to participate in two short films that will be incorporated into the beginning of Acts 1 and 2 at the theater. We will cast a “Clara” for the short films and other parts. Rehearsals will be held on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Filming will occur on November 20-21. The schedule is tight. If you are not available for all rehearsals or filming you should consider waiting until next year.

Students in Levels 2-5 who are not vaccinated will audition on Sunday, September 26, for parts in the filmed dances.

We will be holding auditions for students who are 12+ years and vaccinated in Levels 5-8 on Saturday, September 25. You must have completed at least one of the required vaccine doses by September 25 and have confirmed a date for the second vaccine as evidenced by a valid vaccination card in order to audition.

Again, we understand how disappointed some of you may feel. We, too, are disappointed. And yet, we are also excited. We know this year’s Nutcracker might look different. Yet there is no question we are moving in the right direction and this year’s production will be amazing. It may even provide additional performing opportunities for some dancers.

Thank you for understanding that these parameters are designed to provide the safest possible environment so that we may actually perform. Thank you for your continued support of New Haven Ballet as we work with our partners in New Haven and the surrounding areas to make performing in the theater a reality.

New Haven Ballet annually presents a full-length production of The Nutcracker choreographed by Lisa Sanborn at the historic Shubert Theatre in downtown New Haven. This wonderful favorite is set to music by Tchaikovsky and has become a holiday tradition for many residents of the greater New Haven area. While NHB was unable to perform its full-length production live in 2020, NHB’s Company dancers performed the Waltz of the Flowers privately for video recording (full recorded production is below.)

Banner Photo: Thomas Giroir Photography © 2021


To provide the greater New Haven Community with exceptional classical ballet training, performances, and outreach programs, that nurture appreciation of ballet and foster the joy of dance.

On October 31, 2020, NHB’s Board of Directors adopted the following Diversity and Inclusion Statement:

New Haven Ballet celebrates those who aspire to excellence in classical ballet. A culture of creativity is the core of our work and diversity promotes innovation. The arts can provide powerful life-changing experiences that prepare students and impact audiences to lead more successful, meaningful and culturally rich lives. The arts can also prove to be an important platform for social change. At New Haven Ballet we are passionate about creating an inclusive dance environment and performances that promote and value diversity and inclusion. We will continue to strive to increase diversity in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, and perspective, which will improve and strengthen our work.