The Nutcracker returning to Toronto stage with pandemic protocols

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Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, right, and dancer Julia Ostrowski, left, appear as cannon dolls, with dancer Trygve Cumpston, centre, in the National Ballet of Canada's production of the The Nutcracker in Toronto on Dec. 24, 2013. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, right, and dancer Julia Ostrowski, left, appear as cannon dolls, with dancer Trygve Cumpston, centre, in the National Ballet of Canada's production of the The Nutcracker in Toronto on Dec. 24, 2013. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press - image credit)

After cancelling the remainder of its 2020-21 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Ballet of Canada has lined up performances that include The Nutcracker.

The popular production returns to the stage at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto in time for the holiday season, from Dec. 10-31, the company announced on Tuesday.

The 2021-22 season launches with a previously announced mixed program running from Nov. 11-27, featuring Angels' Atlas by renowned Canadian choreographer Crystal Pite and Serenade by the late George Balanchine, the legendary Georgian-American choreographer who co-founded the New York City Ballet.

Serenade opened the New York City Ballet's fall season on Sept. 21.

People entering the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, including artists and staff, will have to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19, along with government-issued ID, the Toronto-based company said.

Members of the audience will have to wear masks at all times, other than when eating or drinking.

In addition, the theatre will operate at 50 per cent capacity, and no celebrity guests will perform the role of the cannon dolls for the traditional holiday performance this year.

The company said all the children's roles will be performed by students of Canada's National Ballet School, with no outside performers. Plus, there will be no children under the age of 12 in the production and all performers and crew will be fully vaccinated.

Subscriptions for the 2021/22 season are now on sale. Single tickets go on sale Oct. 5, the company said in a release.

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