The forecast shows a quarter-century of little girls in white 

Twenty-five years of “Nutcracker.”

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Twenty-five years and those mice are still kicking around. It's amazing. What's the life span for a mouse, anyway? 12 months? It's stem-cells, that's what it is. That's the real Christmas miracle. Twenty-five years of Richmond Ballet's grande dame of toe shoes and snowflakes: Tchaikovsky's famous ballet, “The Nutcracker.” So worry not that they've got it figured out — the dancers will shrink and grow and the snakes and bears will be right on time. Thankfully the ballet, together with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra, are in a giving mood (imagine that at this time of year, or decade), and will present the city's expectant audience with yet another visually satisfying stage performance filled with dancing toys, battling mice and sugarplum fairies, Dec. 12-23 at the Landmark Theater. Tickets are $29-$110. Call 262-8003 or visit www.richmondballet.com. — Mike Hilleary

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