THE SCOOP | Netflix Stars, Canadian Icons Take Turns As Nutcracker Cannon Dolls

By Anya Wassenberg on December 5, 2022

Artists of the Ballet in The Nutcracker (Photo: Karolina Kuras)
Artists of the Ballet in The Nutcracker (Photo: Karolina Kuras)

Netflix star Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, Olympians Sarah Nurse and Renata Fast, and actor Graham Greene are among the celebrities set to take the stage with the National Ballet as the Cannon Doll.

The role of the Cannon Doll in the holiday favourite production of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker has traditionally been played by a high profile guest, which in the past has included Toronto Raptors star Kyle Lowry and Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield.

Hope Muir, Joan and Jerry Lozinski Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada, announced this season’s lineup of Cannon Dolls.

Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, who starred in Netflix’s Never Have I Ever and Disney’s Turning Red, will be making her debut in the celebrity role on opening night on December 10.

The list of others taking on the role includes names familiar to Canadians.

  • Olympic & World Championship Hockey Players Sarah Nurse and Renata Fast;
  • Gold Medal Olympic Rower Sydney Payne and teammate Kristina Walker;
  • Actors Graham Greene, Julie Nolke and Gina Louise Phillips;
  • CBC Radio Hosts Tom Power, Ismaila Alfa and Elamin Abdelmahmoud;
  • ETALK Anchor Tyrone Edwards and ETALK Reporter Chloe Wilde;
  • Global News’ Susan Hay.

The Cannon Doll is part of a longstanding tradition among Nutcracker performances. The NBC’s version is a Petrouchka doll in a colourful costume who shoots a cannon into the audience. The cameo walk-on role can be seen in Act I.

This year’s list joins a celebrated group of 1,080 prominent Canadians who have donned the Petrouchka costume in the past.

The full list of 2022 Cannon Dolls, and the schedule of appearances, can be viewed here.

Some seats are still available for the uber-popular run of the National Ballet’s Nutcracker, choreographed by James Kudelka with music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, set and costume design by Santo Loquasto and lighting design by Jennifer Tipton. Tickets available here.

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