🩰FIRST LOOK: Orlando Ballet celebrates 50 years, debuts new ‘Nutcracker’ show

Artistic Director Jorden Morris combines classic story with modern production, new props, animatronics and costumes

ORLANDO, Fla. – Fifty years and going strong, the Orlando Ballet continues to wow audiences with engaging productions and dance choreography.

It’s gearing up for a special milestone season with revamped holiday classic.

The familiar Nutcracker production performed by the Orlando Ballet is getting a new look.

From sketch to stitch, the dancers are donning new costumes representing characters like the toy soldiers, the Cavalier, even a Heron. Designers putting thought into every detail.

“It’s quite a lengthy process building a costume from scratch, so it takes several fittings in order to build it, get it right, make sure it works for the dancers and that they can maneuver it,” said Artistic Director Jorden Morris.

Morris said the production took three years of planning from concept to storyboarding, building new sets and coming up with new choreography.

“Some really new and nifty things. We’re adding more puppetry into the first act with the marionettes and dolls and a lot of animatronics puppets. Lots of exciting eye candy for the kids... We’re also adding nine-foot snow globe entryways you’ll see dancers entering the stage through during the show,” said Morris. “Seeing it from a pencil sketch on a napkin into something realistic like that is really exciting to see it literally come to life.”

And the new production premiers during a milestone year for Central Florida’s only fully residential professional ballet company celebrating 50 years of the Orlando Ballet.

“The performing arts are a tough business. If you’re in the nonprofit business, you know there’s always going to be financial challenges and other challenges along the way. We’re also pretty tenacious. We’re really excited about introducing a film on our history that will finally chronical this journey from the vision of our three founders to the organization today,” said Executive Director Cheryl Collins.

Orlando Ballet’s new season kicks off with Reflections, a performance celebrating the evolution of the Orlando Ballet and a look towards the future. And the organizers say it’s going to be on point.

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About the Author:

Crystal Moyer is a morning news anchor who joined the News 6 team in 2020.