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'Making a New American Nutcracker' wins the 2018 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Award® for Best Documentary, Cultural

For immediate release
Chicago, IL - November 12, 2018

Making a New American NUTCRACKER, produced by WTTW and The Joffrey Ballet, has been honored with a 2018 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Award® in the category of Best Documentary, Cultural. The award was accepted by WTTW producer Daniel Andries on Saturday, November 10 at the award ceremony.

Making a New American NUTCRACKER, which premiered in November 2017 on WTTW11 and the companion website,, was also offered to PBS stations nationwide for the upcoming holiday season. The documentary and website went behind the scenes to tell the story of The Joffrey Ballet’s new interpretation of the beloved holiday classic, set on the fairgrounds of Chicago’s 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. Audiences were introduced to the creative talents who made it happen, including Tony Award®-winning choreographer Christopher Wheeldon; Caldecott Medal-winning author Brian Selznick; Joffrey Ballet artistic director Ashley Wheater, and many others. The film also explored the history of the ballet, its success in the United States following the Second World War, and the history of the city of Chicago.

Making a New American NUTCRACKER will return to WTTW11 (11.1) and WTTW Prime (11.2) during the holiday season beginning Thursday, December 20 at 8:00 pm. The documentary can also be viewed at any time on and through the PBS/WTTW video app.

“It was an unforgettable and inspiring experience to work with the talented people at the Joffrey on this unique production, which preserved the magical quality of the original story while also shining a spotlight on the vital role that local immigrants played in the creation of the Fair,” said Andries.

Making a New American NUTCRACKER was produced by Daniel Andries and narrated by actress Neve Campbell. Executive Producer: Daniel Soles; Associate Producers: Tom Orland and Kaitlynn Scannell. Director of Photography: Tom Siegel. Editor: Paul Thornton. Rehearsal and performance footage shot by Big Foot Media.

Making a New American NUTCRACKER was made possible through the generosity of The Grainger Foundation of Lake Forest, Illinois.

WTTW is the PBS member station in Chicago, committed to creating and presenting unique media content across distinct television and digital channels – WTTW11, WTTW Prime, WTTW Create/WTTW World, WTTW PBS Kids 24/7, and the PBS/WTTW video app. Recognized for award-winning journalism and local productions such as Chicago Tonight, Chicago River Tour, Check, Please!; digital-first series such as Urban Nature, Foodphiles, and Chefs Off the Clock; and the national productions 10 That Changed America and Nature Cat, WTTW presents the very best in public affairs, arts and culture, nature and science, history and documentary, and children’s public media content. Connect with WTTW on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

The Joffrey Ballet is a world-class, Chicago-based ballet company and dance education organization committed to artistic excellence and innovation, presenting a unique repertoire encompassing masterpieces of the past and cutting-edge works. The Joffrey is committed to providing arts education and accessible dance training through its Joffrey Academy of Dance and Community Engagement programs. Connect with the Joffrey on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.