The Nutcracker (Russian: Щелкунчик, Shchelkunchik), Op. 71, is a fairy tale-ballet in two acts, three scenes, by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, composed in 1891–92. Alexandre Dumas père's adaptation of the story "The Nutcracker and the Mouse King" by E. T. A. Hoffmann was set to music by Tchaikovsky (staged by Marius Petipa and commissioned by the director of the Imperial Theatres Ivan Vsevolozhsky in 1891). The plot of Hoffmann's story is much more elaborate than that of the ballet; in the tale, the heroine Marie's adventures with the toys and with the Nutcracker are not a dream, and at the end she marries the Nutcracker/Prince.
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