Want to know more about the ballet? Here’s everything you need to know prior to attending a performance.
There is no specific dress code enforced at the ballet. Some patrons attend in jeans while others wear tuxedos and ball gowns. Generally, opening night performances are more formal and matinees are more casual. Theaters can also be cold, so a wrap or light jacket can keep you comfortable no matter what the weather is like outside.
Check the time of your show and be sure to leave yourself plenty of time so that traffic, weather or parking don’t delay you. If you’re running behind, you will not be seated until an appropriate break in the performance, which may be intermission. This is to ensure the magic is not lost by a constant stream of latecomers. For more tips on how to enrich your experience, visit our venue page.
The evolution of ballet spans a millennium. And while the movements are French, its origins are Italian. Ballet began as an elaborate form of entertainment for the Italian nobility, reaching its pinnacle in France during the reign of Louis XIV.
Much like today, the earliest ballets used dance to tell a story, recreating events from mythology through music and movement to inspire an entire art form.
Ballet was first organized as a system of movement by Louis XIV’s personal ballet master in 17th-century French courts. Over time, the French names for ballet poses and positions became universal. Today, dancers can take a class anywhere in the world and easily follow along even if they don’t speak French.
There are more than two types of ballet, but these are the most common.
A traditional style of ballet that emphasizes artistry through technique. Established and refined over centuries, classical ballets include pointe work and are set to the beautiful sounds of an orchestral score.
A contemporary style of ballet that tends to redefine the rules of dance and push the boundaries of ballet. Modern ballet is both emotionally and visually evocative and often brings abstract ideas to life on stage.