SKOWHEGAN — Once upon a time there was a king and queen who had a beautiful daughter who was a princess.

One day, a mouse bit the girl and she became ugly, but a wizard came to the rescue and said that if a young boy kissed her, she would be beautiful again.

A fierce battle with the Mouse King ensues and strange things begin to happen.

Such is the premise of “The Nutcracker Ballet,” first performed in St. Petersburg, Russia, in December 1892.

St. Petersburg is also the hometown of Bossov Ballet Theater dancer and artistic director, Andre Bossov, who created an adaptation that is closer to the original Nutcracker than more modern versions seen in the United States, according to Michael Wyly, 71, executive director of the ballet theater company.

“Andre’s adaptation is more authentic than you often see; it’s very typical of Andre — he will want to read the original fairy tale and build that into his ballet,” Wyly said.

The company will perform it’s version of the ballet based on the story “The Nutcracker and the King of Mice” written by E.T.A. Hoffman with a score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky this Friday, Saturday and Sunday on the stage of the Skowhegan Opera House.

Wyly said the ballet company’s performance moved to Skowhegan because of renovations under way at the Waterville Opera House, where it typically performs. The group is based at Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield.

“Skowhegan’s a beautiful nice old town with a lot of tradition, and we like that,” Wyly said.

The opera house, built in 1907, has classic turn-of-the-century elegance, with a curved balcony, oak staircases and gilded, raised plaster ornamentation. It seats almost 850 people.

Shows are 7 p.m. Friday, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for people 62 and older and children under 12.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367

[email protected]com


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