The Nutcracker comes to Stephens Auditorium for the 40th year


Bill Barry

The Nutcracker ballet at Stephens Auditorium will consist of over 150 local dancers and two guest principle dancers.

The Nutcracker Ballet has been a staple of the holiday season for many, as it has become one of the most popular ballets and is set on Christmas Eve.

Every year since 1981, with the exception of 2020, Stephens Auditorium has welcomed The Nutcracker Ballet onto their stage. This year there are three shows, with 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. performances on Saturday and a 1 p.m. performance Sunday. This performance is in partnership with the Robert Thomas Dancenter.

“The Nutcracker is timeless and so important for creating a particular holiday ambience that promotes joy, love, hope and excitement,” stated Tanya Trombly, Nutcracker dancer, in an email. “It’s a holiday tradition that never gets old or fades and has the power to draw families together as something to look forward to each Christmas season.”

Trombly has been a part of The Nutcracker production for 30 years. She started dancing nearly 40 years ago, at the young age of 3.

“I fell in love with how dancing made me feel, both the challenge of the physicality and the opportunity to express myself through movement,” Trombly stated. “I’ve always been extremely shy and have a hard time using words to communicate. Dance allows me to connect to others and leave an impact on the energy of the world in a different way.”

The Stephens Auditorium production will include unique costumes, sets and design elements that separate it from the traditional ballet. Trombly stated that she looks forward to performing in Ames, as she feels welcomed by event organizers and guests who attend the performances.

Trombly will portray the Sugar Plum Fairy, her second year in the role, at Stephens Auditorium. With the Tiniest Baker being her role when she first started, she has proved herself worthy to play a lead role over the years. Mauricio Vera Nuñez will be playing the Cavalier, with him and Trombly being the guest principal dancers performing alongside over 150 local dancers.

“To ensure we are ready to perform for you all and put on a good show, [my partner] Mauricio and I have been rehearsing back in New York City for the past several weeks,” Trombly stated. “We can’t wait to get up on stage with everyone and share in the spirit of the season!”

Tickets are on sale online, with each show’s tickets priced at $30.