Nutcracker
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

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The seventh of 12 entries for Tchaikovsky in the Ultimate Hall of Fame. This peaked at number 59 in 2012.

Audiences in St. Petersburg were promised 'a fairy-tale ballet' in the winter of 1892 when, all around the city, posters began to appear advertising the much anticipated new project from Tchaikovsky.

There is a wonderfully vivid, pictorial quality to Tchaikovsky's colourful music. From the elegant Waltz of the Flowers to the thrilling Russian Dance, the score is a feast of wonderful melodies. Other favourites include the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies and the Dance of the Reed Flutes. Tchaikovsky had several reservations about it — not surprising, given the less than ecstatic response to some of his earlier works — but the composer evidently had nothing to fear — it has become a perennial Christmas favourite on stage, and the music.