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NYCB Vol. 5 No. 14 - Nutcracker

Updated: Mar 31

[14/50] Beloved SAB teacher, Andrei (Krammy) Kramarevksy began performing the role of Drosselmeyer in 1978 (aged 49) and continued for 36 years until he was 85. He recalled Balanchine saying to him:


"'You are an actor. I want to see you in The Nutcracker as Drosselmeyer.' He gave me one hour of rehearsal before the performance. He himself showed me the mise en scène. He said, 'Now, go make up, immediately. You are fantastic. I believe in you.'"

—Andrei Kramarevsky in I Remember Balanchine (affiliate link)

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“‘The part requires a rather strenuous climb up a ladder inside a clock tower. It is the most difficult moment of the entire role,’ Mr. Kramarevsky said in the oral history, recorded when he was 81. ‘Young men — some four times younger; one is twice as young as I — ask to please slow it down. I say, ‘What else is there to do?’ I’ve been climbing for 33 years.’”

—by Neil Genzlinger, New York Times, 2019





Andrei (Krammy) Kramarevsky as Drosselmyer. Unidentified Prince and Marie.

 Photo by Martha Swope, 1988.


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