The Nutcracker at Wethersfield
Wethersfield Foundation works to support beauty and the arts as one element of our core mission.
The Wethersfield Foundation is honored to partner with BalletCollective (founded by NYCB dancers Troy Schumacher and Ashley Laracey) to produce The Nutcracker at Wethersfield – the only live COVID-19 socially-distanced production of the holiday classic cast with members of the furloughed NYCB - who are unable to perform at Lincoln Center this pandemic year.
The Wethersfield Foundation welcomes the chance to stand with these artists. We recognize that they have beat near-to-impossible odds to arrive at the very pinnacle of their success - only to have their livelihoods threatened by a once-in-a-century pandemic.
Wethersfield Estate and Garden is a community resource. As such, we worked with BalletCollective to enable access for local families hit hard in economic terms by the pandemic so that they too could attend the event. We all need a little joy. It is no surprise that our generous underwriters agreed - and 40% of invitations extended to the events were gifted to underserved families as well as pandemic essential workers.
With health and safety our first priority throughout, we collaborated with both medical and legal teams to innovate. We scaled to ensure compliance with all necessary public health regulations to keep artists working, to deliver some joy in a year that challenged so many – and we did this safely.
Meanwhile, Director Troy Schumacher re-choreographed an immersive retold Nutcracker for COVID-19 times in a matter of just weeks. The cast quarantined alongside him, rehearsing as a pod to perform for a live audience. Many, for the first time since March. Their collective spirit made magic and is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.
“When, in mid-September, I entered the house of the Wethersfield Estate for the first time I had no idea that it would actually be The Nutcracker that would come to life to help save us as artists. At the time I simply thought, “Is this the set of The Nutcracker?” I immediately set to work attempting to solve all of the intricate problems related to reimagining this quintessential holiday tradition inside of and surrounding the house, an enormous challenge any year, but seemingly impossible in 2020. That night, I could not sleep from the excitement of what I felt this could provide for dance and its artists and have been working tirelessly to bring this magical idea to life, and to give 50+ members of my industry work and purpose this holiday season.”
View at Home
The Nutcracker at Wethersfield is streaming live for free on Sunday, December 20th, 2020 at 5pm EST and will be available on demand from December 23, 2020, at 5pm EST to December 26, 2020, at 11:59pm EST.