The longest running San Jose Nutcracker will capture your imagination and transport you to a magical world of brave toy soldiers & dancing snowflakes.

Audiences will be awed by the grace and talent of our world-class guest artists Sasha De Sola and Tiit Helimets (Principal Dancers, San Francisco Ballet) Dec. 6-8, and Claire Rathbun (of Syracuse City Ballet) and Jake Casey (formerly of Cincinnati Ballet and most recently the Estonian Theatre Vanemuine Ballet) Dec 13-15.

The Cambrian Symphony’s 52-piece orchestra will be masterfully led by conductor Scott Johannes Krijnen.

Continuing the tradition for the 54th year, San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley dancers take part in this iconic production at the San José Center for the Performing Arts in downtown San Jose. This holiday season, experience the beauty and splendor of The San José Dance Theatre’s, The Nutcracker, a San Jose family tradition since 1966.

  • Chelsea
  • Natalie

The Best Nutcracker in San Jose according to


Performance Dates

December 6, 2019 @ 10:30am*
December 6, 2019 @ 7:30pm**
December 7, 2019 @ 2:00pm
December 7, 2019 @ 7:30pm
December 8, 2019 @ 2:00pm
December 13, 2019 @ 7:30pm**
December 14, 2019 @ 2:00pm
December 14, 2019 @ 7:30pm
December 15, 2019 @ 2:00pm

The Nutcracker Calendar


The Nutcracker ballet was first presented 123 years ago at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, on December 17, 1892. Peter Tchaikovsky, the famous Russian composer, was commissioned by mastermind choreographer Marius Petipa to compose the Nutcracker ballet, score based on Alexandre Dumas’s adaptation of E.T.A. Hoffman’s tale “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.”

The first performance of The Nutcracker ballet in the United States was by the San Francisco Opera Ballet, in 1944. The production was directed by William Christensen. Twenty years later in 1966, San José Dance Theatre brought the Silicon Valley it’s own version of the Nutcracker ballet. San José Dance Theatre is the second oldest Nutcracker ballet in the Bay Area and has been produced each and every December for 54 consecutive years.

Read the Full Nutcracker Ballet Story


Audiences will be awed by the grace and talent of our Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier, Sasha De Sola and Tiit Helimets with San Francisco Ballet, and Claire Rathburn and Jake Casey of Syracuse City Ballet and Cincinnati Ballet will be performing the second weekend. Also gracing the stage, the dashing Snow King portrayed by professional guest artist, MichaelPappalardo, with the San Jose Dance Theatre.

Sasha De Sola


Sugar Plum Fairy
Dec. 6-8, All Performances

Tiit Helimets

Principal Dancer with San FRancisco Ballet

Sugar Plum Cavalier
Dec. 6-8, All Performances

Claire Rathbun

Principal Guest Artist, SYRACUSE CITY BALLET

Sugar Plum Fairy
Dec. 13-15, All Performances

Jake Casey

Former dancer with CINCINNATI Ballet and up and coming choreographer

Sugar Plum Cavalier
Dec. 13-15, All Performances

Linda Hurkmans, M.A.

Artistic Director, San Jose Dance Theatre

Scott Krijnen

music director and conductor, cambrian symphony


San José Dance Theatre is the official school of the original San Jose Nutcracker and Resident Ballet Company of the San Jose Center For The Performing Arts. San José Dance Theatre offers excellence in dance training in a nurturing environment. Classical ballet is the main focus, but students receive a well rounded curriculum including pointe, repertoire, Men’s class, Pas de Deux training, Modern dance, Jazz, Character Class, Chinese Tumbling, Pilates, and Progressing Ballet Technique. San Jose Dance Theatre has produced students who have gone on to professional dance careers and scholarships to universities. San José Dance Theatre offers training for youth and adults at beginning through pre-professional levels.



Nutcracker Assembly at Your School

San José Dance Theatre offers an opportunity to learn about the discipline of ballet including the dedicated training and practice required. Youth ballet students from San José Dance Theatre are available on a limited basis to visit Bay Area schools. During our school assemblies, dancers and Nutcracker staff will provide a 45-minute overview of ballet and demonstrate excerpts of Nutcracker dances.

Nutcracker School Performance

A dream field trip for your class or school. The Nutcracker never fails to dazzle adults and children alike with its magic and adventure and promises to be an unforgettable experience. Research indicates that students who participate in the arts are more successful academically, socially and as members of their communities. The Nutcracker for young children 2019 will be performed at our exclusive student performance on Friday, December 6 at 10:30am at the San José Center for the Performing Arts. This performance is sure to provide lasting memories to your students and fulfills Common Core Standards.

To reserve tickets for the Nutcracker School Performance CLICK HERE or for more information about having a Nutcracker Assembly at your school, email Outreach School Coordinator, Jacqui Culler, [email protected]