Bucket List Plans: The Nutcracker Varna International Ballet

Before the pandemic, we were quite a busy family, planning things to do at the weekends and making sure that we always had some kind of trip planned during the school holidays. Add in travel restrictions for a couple of years and then adding a new baby into it, we have been much more home-birds, but I’d like to get back to doing more things in our free time and ticking more things off the old bucket list.

One thing that I have wanted to do, ever since my daughter started showing an interest in ballet and doing ballet lessons herself, is to take her to a ballet. I have only ever been to one in my life, but I’d love to take her to see the ballet. She is all about dancing! The good news is that Raymond Gubbay Limited has announced that Varna International Ballet and Orchestra will visit the UK for the very first time in their 75-year history with classical performances including The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Coppelia, and Giselle.

Touring dates and locations

The tour will start in Cardiff from 17th December, and finish in March 2023. After Cardiff, they are touring in Basingstoke, Blackpool, Bournemouth, Brighton, Bristol, Buxton, Darlington, Edinburgh, High Wycombe, Hull, Ipswich, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester, Northampton, Norwich, Nottingham, Oxford, Peterborough, Reading, Southend, Wimbledon and Wolverhampton, so there should be something close to everyone. We will be going to see the show in Wimbledon and am definitely looking forward to that. 

Varna International Ballet

The ballet company is known for their award-winning soloists and magnificent corps de ballet. They have been producing shows of the highest quality in their native Bulgaria, as well as other places abroad; it’s great that they will finally be bringing it to the UK. 

Varna State Opera was founded in 1947. They formed Varna Ballet and brought it to the international stage and founded the first and now world-famous Varna International Ballet Competition, in 1964. Since 2010 Varna State Opera and Varna Drama Theatre have been united in one institute called Theatre and Music Production Centre Varna.  

The Nutcracker

The ballet that we will be seeing in Wimbledon, although they will be doing each at each location, is The Nutcracker, which is honestly a dream. It is just the most famous that I know of, and although we’ll be seeing it in February, it is just all festive as the start of story in the ballet falls on Christmas Eve. As snowflakes fall outside, the warm glow of the open fire sends flickering shadows across the boughs of the Christmas tree and all the presents beneath. When midnight strikes the dancers are swept away to a fairy-tale world where nothing’s quite as it seems. From things like toy dolls springing to life, the Mouse-king and his mouse-army battle with the Nutcracker Prince and we travel through the Land of Snow to an enchanted place where the magic really begins.

I haven’t seen it before, but I do think it will be the best one to take a child too, just because of all of the Christmas festivities and the fun characters.

Have you ever been to the ballet before? What is on your bucket list this year and next year? It would be great to hear what you think.

*our tickets have been gifted in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

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