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'The Nutcracker': Wishing you a fairy, merry Christmas

If you go...

What: "The Nutcracker Ballet"

When: 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 21

Where: Sheldon Theatre, 443 W. Third St.

Cost: $22.50-27.50

More info: 651-388-8700 or 800-899-5759, or

Christmas just wouldn't be Christmas at the Sheldon Theater without "The Nutcracker Ballet."

Continental Ballet Company returns again to present Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's classic at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 18.

The ballet develops themes of generosity, non-violence and responsibility through the tale of Clara's fantastic voyage to the Land of the Sugarplum Fairy with her magical godfather Drosselmeyer.

The performance is a local tradition. Hear Tchaikovsky's songs including "Nutcracker Music," "Sugar Plum Dance," "Arabian Dance" and "Waltz of Flowers."

Choreography and staging were done by Director Riet Velthuisen. She has choreographed and/or staged all of the ballets in the company's repertoire.

Riet's original choreography has won recognition by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Arts. Her dedication and passion for the art of classical ballet is complimented by her commitment and vision for quality productions.

Continental Ballet Company's mission is to promote the integrity of classical ballet while bringing the ballet into the community.

Accomplished through public performances, studio classes and educational programs, every effort is made to make the art of ballet accessible to a greater audience and to share knowledge and passion for the art of classical ballet.

The company has been providing professional performances and educational programs for more than 20 years in the Twin Cities.

Performing such classics as "Swan Lake," "Sleeping Beauty," "Nutcracker," and "Cinderella," dancers have presented more than 130 formal performances to 100,000 people statewide.

The Continental Ballet Company was established in 1988 by Velthuisen, a native of Holland who has danced professionally with several European companies, including the Dutch National Ballet.

Tickets are $22.50-27.50. Call 651-388-8700 or visit for more information.