The Joffrey Ballet’s “The Nutcracker.” (Photo by Todd Rosenberg)

Pure, grand-scale magic. That is the only way to describe the Joffrey Ballet’s glorious production of “The Nutcracker,” which breaks the mold of the traditional version by being set against the grandeur of Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair.

The Joffrey Ballet performs the world premiere of the newly-commissioned “Platée” with choreography by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa set to Rameau’s Suite from Platée performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra with conductor Harry Bicket. (Credit: Todd Rosenberg)

It was an evening of sheer, unadulterated delight as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra joined forces with the Joffrey Ballet on Thursday for a pair of world premieres.

Amanda Assucena and Edson Barbosa of the Joffrey Ballet dance in “Vespertine.” (Credit: Cheryl Mann)

The Joffrey Ballet spun onto the Lyric Opera House stage with a program of three beautifully danced works under the umbrella title “Beyond Borders.” Those “borders” were stylistic rather than geographical.

Victoria Jaiani as Kitri in "Don Quixote." (Photo by Cheryl Mann)

The production not only ideally captures the mix of the comical, satirical, fantastical and romantic aspects of Miguel de Cervantes’ story, but with its beautiful sets, costumes, projections, puppets and aerial tricks it also is an ideal showcase for the Joffrey.

Gayeon Jung and Victoria Jaiani of the Joffrey Ballet perform in George Balancbine’s “Serenade.” (Credit: Cheryl Mann)

For its spring season at the Lyric Opera House, the Joffrey Ballet has devised a program composed of two dramatically and stylistically different works.

The Joffrey Ballet’s latest production is John Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men.” It’s a story that ends in tragedy — but the artists hope to highlight something else in their rendition. (WTTW News)

The Joffrey Ballet’s latest production is John Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men.” It’s a story that ends in tragedy — but the artists hope to highlight something else in their rendition.

Joffrey Ballet’s “Winning Works” program featured four world premiere pieces created for members of the Joffrey Studio Company and Joffrey Academy. (Credit Todd Rosenberg)

A primary example of the Joffrey’s commitment to “the new” was this weekend’s return of the “Winning Works” program, now in its 12th season, with four performances that served as a showcase of four world premiere pieces created by four different choreographers. 

The Joffrey Ballet ensemble in “The Nutcracker.” (Photo by Todd Rosenberg)

Pure winter magic. The Joffrey Ballet’s altogether unique production of “The Nutcracker,” has never looked more glorious or been danced more ideally.

Fernando Duarte and Stefan Goncalvez perform in “Swing Low.” (Photo by Cheryl Mann)

With its ideally titled program, “Home: A Celebration,” the Joffrey Ballet finally made its pandemic-delayed debut as the resident dance company at the Lyric Opera House on Wednesday. And it did so by way of a beautifully constructed and exquisitely danced program.

The Joffrey Ballet returns with “Home: A Celebration,” a dance embodied after the old Negro Spiritual, “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.” (WTTW News)

The Joffrey Ballet is welcoming back company dancers and instructors. It’s also welcoming choreographers, including Chanel DaSilva. As one of Joffrey’s 2020 Winning Works choreographers, the New York based artist is back with a dance interpretation and reimagining of the old Negro Spiritual, “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.”

(Photo credit: Kyle Dunleavy)

Should you need any additional proof of the adage that “absence makes the heart grow fonder,” the recent one-night-only performance by the Joffrey Ballet at the Ravinia Festival provided all the evidence required.

“Florencia En El Amazonas” (Credit: Lynn Lane / Houston Grand Opera)

After 15 months of dark theaters and livestreamed performances, two of Chicago’s most famous performing arts companies announce they are returning to the stage for live performances — this time under one roof.

Stefan Goncalvez (Photo by Matt de la Peña)

This world premiere, feverishly choreographed by Nicolas Blanc and performed by 15 of the company’s emotionally fiery dancers, is a work of such beauty and dynamic intensity that it can and should easily endure as part of the standard ballet rep for years to come.

Anais Bueno with Brooke Linford and Christine Roca (Courtesy of the Joffrey Ballet)

Two thrillingly dramatic works — one by way of dance and another by way of radio theater — now serve as vivid evocations marking the one-year “anniversary” of the pandemic, and all the physical and psychological dislocations it has engendered. 

Cara Marie Gary in “The Nutcracker.” (Photo by Cheryl Mann)

This fall was to mark the Joffrey’s first season in its new home on the Lyric Opera stage after many years of residence at the Auditorium Theatre.

(WTTW News)

How the Chicago performing arts community is preparing for the uncertainty of the spring season.