A cherished holiday classic returns to the Centennial Concert Hall this week. 

The Royal Winnipeg Ballet presents Nutcracker – a magical story with a ravishing score told through the beautiful and athletic art of dance. 



Battle with the Mouse King and adventure to the Land of Sweets alongside Clara and the Nutcracker— who springs to life as the dashing Prince Julien.  

“I’m really excited,” says Grace Hudson, who performs the role of young Clara in this year’s RWB production.  

Originally from Toronto, the 14-year-old is in her second year in the RWB’s Professional Division (PD), an internationally renowned training institute for aspiring professional dancers and dance teachers. 

First performed in December 1892 in St. Petersburg, Nutcracker has since become a beloved Christmas tradition around the world and, as such, has provided countless performers the chance to dance in a variety of roles in productions of all sizes.  

“This is a really big opportunity (for students) to join the full company,” says PD artistic faculty member Kendra Woo. “To be taking on such big roles at such young ages is a really great stepping stone into the future of what a career might look like.”  

Cason Hayes travelled north of the border to join the Professional Division program. The 15-year-old from Columbus, Georgia is in the midst of his first year (and winter!) in Winnipeg and will perform the role of Julien in the RWB’s Nutcracker production.  

“My parents knew that I wanted to travel abroad for dance so (the PD program) was the next natural thing to do,” Hayes says.  

Nutcracker runs from Wednesday, December 21 through Wednesday, December 28 – with a break on December 25.  

For a full list of show times and tickets, visit: www.rwb.org