The Gift of Ballet

During our Nutcracker season we asked many of you to donate to our Holiday Magic Campaign, which sent children from the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City and their families to The Nutcracker. 

Thanks to your generous gifts, more than 225 local children were able to attend The Nutcracker! The children enjoyed the performances so much that they created artwork as a special “thank you.” We couldn’t resist sharing. Without you, this kind of inspiration would not be possible.

Kansas City Ballet is thankful to all of those who gave the gift of The Nutcracker to these local children.


A Very Merry Nutcracker!

What has Kansas City said about Kansas City Ballet’s The Nutcracker? Click on the links below for exclusive interviews, videos, and pictures! There’s still time to buy tickets! Click HERE for more information!

KC Star: Click the link below to read about the last performance of Todd Bolender’s The Nutcracker.

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KC Star: Click the link below to see Nutcracker by the Numbers.

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KC Star: Learn about some Kansas City holiday productions!

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KC Star: Click the link to view a gallery of Nutcracker rehearsal photos!

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KC Independent: Click the link below to read about the final performance of Todd Bolender’s The Nutcracker.

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KCUR: Click the link to listen and/or read about Kansas City Ballet Dancer, Geoffrey Kropp, and his busy ballet schedule.

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KSHB TV 41: Click the link to see how reporter, Cynthia Newsome finds out ballet isn’t easy!

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WDAF 4: Click the link to read about this years Nutcracker production!

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KCUR’s: Click the link for a behind-the-scenes speak peek of The Nutcracker dress rehearsal!

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KKFI: Click the link to listen to radio host, Michael Hogge, talk about our annual production of The Nutcracker!

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Nutcracker Ball – Meet the Co-Chairs

Susan Bubb and Megan Bubb Cribb: Nutcracker Ball Co-Chairmen 2013

Susan Bubb (left) & Megan Bubb Cribb (right)

Susan Bubb and Megan Bubb Cribb are honored to be representing the Kansas City Ballet Guild as Chairmen of the 46th annual Nutcracker Ball. The rich tradition of the Ballet Ball and the timeless beauty of The Nutcracker will magically transform the Bartle Hall Grand Ballroom on December 6th for this very special and momentous occasion. Longtime Ballet fans, Susan and Megan are happy to be able to set the framework for this new annual event. With a new date, theme, and location, this is sure to be an evening of enchantment to put you into the holiday spirit.  Net proceeds from the fundraiser support both the Kansas City Ballet and Kansas City Ballet School. Susan and Megan are proud to be  part of such an exciting time for the performing arts in Kansas City, with the announcement of the Ballet’s new artistic director, Devon Carney, we know you will agree that 2013 is truly a milestone of new direction. Susan and her husband Stephen have enjoyed opening their home for many local organizations, the Junior League of Johnson and WyandotteCounties, the Lyric Opera, The Barstow School, PEO, Fireside, the Ballet Guild and the CarlsonCenter at JohnsonCountyCommunity college. Megan careers as team lead of The Bubb Cribb Team of Reece and Nichols, she shares this team with her brother Eric Bubb and husband Christopher J. Cribb. She has a passion for all things real estate and Kansas City.

This Mother Daughter duo are looking forward to an enchanting evening with family and friends.

To purchase tickets to the 2013 Nutcracker Ball held on December 6th at Bartle Hall, you can visit our website or call 913.232.7609.

The Sugar Plum Fairy: Past and Present

The Sugar Plum Fairy is one of the main roles in The Nutcracker. Representing a sort of ‘Queen’ in the Kingdom of Sweets, she dons a sparkly gold tutu and a shining tiara in KCB’s version of The Nutcracker. By her side is her handsome cavalier, who shines alongside her during their Grand Pa de Deux.

Take a look back at Sugar Plum Fairies over the past years in this collage below. Also, hear from one of our current Sugar Plum Fairies in our newest video.


Students in “The Nutcracker”

Ballet Master James Jordan

James Jordan has been with Kansas City Ballet as Ballet Master since 1991. This will be his 22nd Nutcracker production with KCB. Along with the company dancers, James will be working with over 200 students who have auditioned to be a part of this special production!

Q: About how many students auditioned for The Nutcracker this year?
A: We had about 250 students audition for roles ranging from Angels to Flowers.  Twenty of those who auditioned are currently students at the UMKC Conservatory and we take seven of their dancers into our production.  All of these students range in age from age seven to 21.

Q: What do you look for when picking the role of Clara?
A: That particular role requires an imagination and an expressive body that will help tell the story to the audience.  However, Clara does perform classical steps in both acts and therefore must have a strong ballet technique.  It’s tricky because she must be a good dancer but also needs to move like a little girl and not the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Clara with dancer Luke Luzicka

Q: Besides Clara, what are the most sought-after roles for students?
A: Any of the girls’ roles in the Party Scene are desired because they get  to curl their hair and wear frilly dresses and dance around. The boys all aspire to be The Prince and perform the solo pantomime in Act 2.

Q: Since there are multiple student casts, what are rehearsals like for the students?
A: There are usually three different groups rehearsing at the same time in different studios.  Some roles are divided into two groups:  Cast A or B and some are divided in threes:  Cast 1, 2 or 3.  Oftentimes, all the students are on their feet learning the steps but later in the process there will only be one group on the floor as we work out the spacing.  They switch groups all the time to provide a rest and also to keep everyone engaged in the process.

Q: What is the interaction like between the students in The Nutcracker and the company dancers during rehearsals?
A: Many of our company dancers grew up in similar situations when they looked up to professional dancers who appeared in their school’s production of The Nutcracker.  Now they mentor the little ones and help them to focus and learn their steps and spacing.

Q: What do you think students enjoy most about being involved in The Nutcracker?
A: That’s a tough one to answer.  I think they love the challenge of learning the steps at the Bolender Center but adore the excitement of dancing in costumes with the KC Symphony at the Kauffman Center.

Students as Angels

Q: Does performing alongside professional dancers in a full-blown performance typically enhance the students’ education?
A: Oh, very much so!  They see the professionals preparing in the wings for their entrances and flying through the air as they perform very challenging steps and partnering moves.  The students see their classroom steps really used and executed brilliantly and that challenges them to try harder in their classes as they work towards becoming professional dancers.  Also, the students see true artistry at work as the company dancers add their imaginations on top of their ballet technique to create truly engaging performances.

Q: What do you hope the students get out of this incredible experience?
A: We all hope that each cast member gains a true sense of personal responsibility as a member of a large team working towards the same goal.  At the conclusion of every performance, there is a real sense of accomplishment.