There is a delicate sense of wonder in narrator Jenny Agutter's refined performance of this story from the 2002 Audie Award-winning Ballet Stories collection. In "The Nutcracker", Clara wakes up at midnight on Christmas Eve to discover that her toy nutcracker soldier has come to life. With Tchaikovsky's music accompanying Agutter's narration, young listeners will be enthralled by the Nutcracker's transformation into a handsome prince and the ensuing celebration in the Land of Sweets. As this magical story ends, children will be left wondering, like Clara, whether it was simply a beautiful dream.
This is a story from the Ballet Stories collection. The magic of ballet is evoked in these enchanting stories presented with many musical excerpts from the works themselves. Jenny Agutter, who before turning to acting was a dancer, presents the stories of two French ballets - Giselle and Coppelia - and the three great ballets by Tchaikovsky, in engaging style. These are tales of princes and princesses, of good fairies and bad witches, and, in Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker, the brave soldier and Clara - but does it happen, or is it a dream? And there is the music - the lovely melody from Swan Lake, The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy and the waltzes and richly atmospheric passages painting, in sound, castles, forests, mists and lakes. A perfect introduction to the ballet.