360 Behind the Scenes: A legacy in the Land of Sweets

Maybe you went to one of the sold-out shows this weekend or maybe you missed the final performances from director Peter Anastos. Either way, see behind the scenes of the 10th annual production of Ballet Idaho's The Nutcracker in 360.

BOISE -- For the last ten years Ballet Idaho has commemorated the Christmas season by putting on a performance of The Nutcracker. Maybe you make it part of your family's holiday tradition and maybe you went to one of the sold-out shows this weekend.

If you did, you saw one of the last productions of artistic director Peter Anastos, who first brought The Nutcracker to Boise back in 2008. That first year he put it together in about six months, a process that usually takes about two years.

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It has certainly grown since then, with two dozen professional dancers on stage and about 100 children from Ballet Idaho's Academy of Dance.

That has also meant a production that has to handled more like troop movements with nearly 500 pieces of costumes and accessories that have to be prepared and maintained. That doesn't even include the sets!

Anastos says despite directing dozens of shows in his decade in Boise he still gets nervous every time the curtain rises on The Nutcracker.

"Well, it's great, I mean, it's thrilling, it's really nice," says Anastos. "It's a good warm feeling. But I don't know, I don't know if other people think this way. I still white-knuckle every performance because so many things can go wrong especially with Nutcracker because it's so complicated. There are so many moving parts and big, heavy moving parts."

Anastos will put on two more shows before stepping aside next year but he will continue to make Boise his home.

During their last hours of rehearsal for The Nutcracker, we went behind the scenes with our 360 camera.

You can get a fully-immersed version of this story on our YouTube channel. The experience is best viewed on the YouTube app, and even better with VR goggles.