Entertainment Performing Arts The History of 'The Nutcracker March' Classical Ballet Music by Tchaikovsky Share PINTEREST Email Print Corbis via Getty Images / Getty Images Performing Arts Dance Basics Styles Singing Acting Musical Theater Ballet Stand Up Comedy By Treva Bedinghaus Treva Bedinghaus Treva L. Bedinghaus is a former competitive dancer who has studied ballet, tap, and jazz. She writes about dance styles and practices and the history of dance. Learn about our Editorial Process Updated on 05/05/19 The march, from "The Nutcracker," is one of the most well-known and recognized melodies of Tchaikovsky's famous ballet. (Another famous ballet with recognizable melodies is Swan Lake.) The actual title of the piece is "March," but most people refer to it as "The Nutcracker March." It is also referred to "The March of the Nutcracker," Marche (in French) and Марш (in Russian). The song appears early in the first act of the ballet. It's the third song in the acts, just after the mini-overture that kicks off the show and "Scene: The Christmas Tree," played during the lighting and decorating of the Christmas tree. The "March" music plays during a lively party scene, which includes dancing, games, and merriment. The cheerful rhythm of the piece helps create a feeling of celebration among the holiday partygoers. For people who have made seeing "The Nutcracker" a part of their holiday traditions, this song brings up a lot of memories and is a fun way to mark the beginning of the performance. Modern Appearances The music from "The Nutcracker" has been arranged and recorded by many famous orchestras over the years. The music has also appeared in a long list of film and television adaptations of "The Nutcracker," as well as other, unrelated productions. For example, music from "The Nutcracker Suite" famously appeared in the classic Disney animation, "Fantasia." The music has also appeared in various video games and other recordings.