The Brandon Ballet will not allow a pandemic to stop its dancers from performing. This year, it will present a classic ballet, The Nutcracker, outdoors. Audiences will see a reimagined holiday classic performed in a safe and responsible manner.

The Brandon Ballet will present its annual production of Tchaikovsky’s holiday classic, The Nutcracker. This year, the performances will take place on an outdoor stage at Overflow Church in Valrico.

Audiences will have three opportunities to watch the performances on Saturday, December 5 at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, December 6 at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased by visiting Overflow Church is located at 4929 Bell Shoals Rd. in Valrico.

Hannah Townend, administrative director of the Brandon Ballet, said, “While The Nutcracker is usually performed in an indoor theater, we are choosing to present this magical ballet on an outdoor stage. Audiences will bring their own chairs and blankets and hot beverages, if they choose, and sit back and enjoy the show within the beauty of nature. In addition to this new and exciting way of viewing dance, various well-known roles in The Nutcracker have been revamped with reimagined choreography to bring a new look to the roles we all know and love.”

The role of Clara is a good example.

Townend explained, “Usually, Clara is the young girl to whom Herr Drosselmeyer gifts the beloved Nutcracker doll. This year, due to the risk that bringing outside dancers in to perform the usual parts poses, Artistic Director Doricha Sales has transformed the Clara role. Clara is now a grandmother. She gives the Nutcracker to her favorite granddaughter, Marie, who then gets to relive the magic of her grandmother’s journey through the Land of Sweets.”

Townend added, “Even as we are continuing to bring the art of dance to the community, we are also continuing to keep our dancers and audience members safe. Company members now dance in smaller groups than before, which not only makes seeing each dancer’s individual face easier, but also ensures social distancing even in the performance. For the iconic snow scene, which utilizes a large cast, dancers will don a mask in addition to their sparkling white tutus.”

This is the 27th season of the Brandon Ballet. The nonprofit was established in 1993 as a pre-professional ballet company. The Brandon Ballet provides superior training and offers three major performances each year.

For more information, please visit or call 684-4282.

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