Westport Academy of Dance has planned three performances of "The Nutcracker" on Saturday, Dec. 3, and Sunday, Dec. 4, at Staples High School.

This year marks the academy's 30th anniversary production of the classic holiday-fantasy ballet, one that revisits the dance school's past and features guest appearances by New York City performers.

The studio has invited Theodore Pollen 3rd, formerly an instructor there for more than 20 years, to return in the honorary role of Herr Drosselmeyer.

It is an academy tradition that the studio's own dancers star in lead roles, such as Clara and the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Ask La Cour, a soloist with the New York City Ballet, will perform as the Cavalier. The studio said his appearance would be an opportunity not only for the Westport dancer cast opposite him but for the entire cast to share the stage with him.

Pasha Knoop, another guest, will appear as the prince. Knoop is a student at American Ballet Theatre's Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in New York, and the academy called him "an up and coming star."

The shows on Saturday, Dec. 3, are at 3 and 7 p.m. The show on Sunday, Dec. 4, is at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for students and seniors. They may be ordered by calling 203-226-9987 or visiting the studio's website: www.westportdance.com.