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Behind the Scenes of an X-Rated Nutcracker with Company XIV

Every night, in a tiny theater on an unassuming tucked-away street in Greenwich Village, a dance troupe that goes by Company XIV treats audiences to a traditional holiday treat—The Nutcracker—performed in the most nontraditional way. And by nontraditional, we mean sexy. Really, really sexy.

We sent photographer Morrigan McCarthy behind the scenes last week as the performers warmed up, did their makeup, got dressed, sang, and danced.

The secret to making sure those pasties stay firmly in place? Lining the entire inside of the adhesive with double-sided costume tape, dancers say, and then squeezing your breast into a point for a maximum number of contact points.

Some of the costumes are made from vintage silk and worn velvet sewn onto new backings.

The company of 14 shimmies, slithers, thrusts, and belts its way through a fantasy candy land much to the delight of the packed audience.

Choreographed and directed by Austin McCormick, Nutcracker Rouge's classically trained singers and dancers immerse the audience in a kinky but sweet two-hour show.

The company includes alums from Juilliard, London's Royal Ballet, and the Lyric Opera of Chicago.