In October, we published Ballet Spectacular, produced in association with The Royal Ballet. The book is a lavish guide to all things ballet, covering the history of the ballet, ballet school, famous ballets, ballet production and what it takes to become a professional ballet dancer.
Last month, the team at Carlton Kids were lucky enough to be invited to The Royal Opera House for a private backstage tour of The Royal Ballet and to say we were excited would be a huge understatement!
For anyone that hasn’t been to see a ballet at The Royal Opera House – you really must! Everything about the building is so lavish and beautiful that it feels truly magical.
As we were shown around the Opera House we were told all about the history of the building. As it stands today, The Royal Opera House is the third theatre built on the Covent Garden site as both were previously destroyed by fire. In the days before electricity, the giant chandelier that hangs in the middle of the theatre would have been filled with candles that had to be individually lit in the evening.
As the Royal Opera House is a fully working theatre, we were lucky enough to witness some of the work that goes into The Royal Ballet productions. Ever wondered why you never see massive lorries in Covent Garden unloading props and set pieces on the street? That’s because there is a lift inside the Opera House that carries the lorry backstage!
The most amazing part of the day was being able to watch ballet dancers warming up in class. This is an experience I will never forget. Watching them perform so gracefully in unison was incredible soothing and relaxing – I wish I could start every morning this way.
We were also taken to the costume department where we saw the beautiful, intricately detailed dresses with the dancers names written on the inside. As a huge fan of Sarah Lamb, principal dancer of The Royal Ballet, it was lovely to be able to see one of her dresses in the flesh. What was interesting about the dresses was how heavy the costumes were making us realise just how strong the dancers are.
It was an incredible opportunity to have a backstage tour of The Royal Ballet, I highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in ballet. It was a truly unique and amazing experience and by far the best working day I’ve ever had! If you want to find out more about the backstage tours, click here.
In fact we were so inspired that the minute we got back to the office, we all booked tickets to see Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in December and we cannot wait!