Tony Robinson stars in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of E. T. A. Hoffmann's renowned Christmas story, which inspired Tchaikovsky's ballet The Nutcracker.
It is Christmas Eve, and young Mary and Fred are opening presents from their godfather, Drosselmeier the toymaker. Mary's favourite gift is a nutcracker soldier, and she is disappointed when his jaw breaks on a particularly hard nut.
She puts him away carefully, promising that Drosselmeier will mend him - and at that moment he seems to come alive. Surely she is just imagining things. But as the grandfather clock begins to chime midnight, all her toys spring to life! Led by the Nutcracker, they rush into battle with an army of mice who emerge from beneath the floorboards - including the seven-headed Mouse King....
Hoffmann's classic children's tale is adapted by Brian Sibley (who also dramatised The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia for radio). Starring Tony Robinson as the Nutcracker, Edward de Souza as Drosselmeier, Eric Allen as the Mouse King and Angela Shaftoe as Mary, it is sure to delight fans of Tchaikovsy's famous ballet - and anyone who loves the magic of a good fairy tale.
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I'm so pleased that there now is a good performance of The Nut Cracker on Audible, just in time for Christmas. I looked at some of the other performances, and with one exception, all of them seemed to be missing something.
There is one performance on Audible that is straight narration, but I decided not to get it. But what was I to do if I wanted to have a performance of this story to play around this time of year?
Thanks to the BBC, this excellent dramatization won me over. They seem to be reminding us of the power of audio drama, something that somehow has gotten lost here in the states.
I must admit that I had some expectations going into this. I expected that I would hear young children in the two leading roles, and I get that. The two young actors bring a real child-like enthusiasm to the story.
As often happens with eh BBC, the whole
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