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Paris Opera Ballet School performance dates, 2012-2013

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Dates for the 2012-2013 performances in Paris were recently released, though booking doesn't start for several months:


a) Annual school 'Demonstrations'

2nd (Sun), 9th (Sun) and 22nd (Sat) December

As usual, the performances on all three dates are the same, featuring students in the lower divisions at 10:30 a.m. and those in the upper divisions grades at 14:30 p.m. Gives an incredible insight into the school's system of training...


B) Annual school 'Spectacle'

17th (Wed) and 18th (Thurs) April, 2013


In addition to the above annual events, there will be two other interesting events next April:


c) The school's 300th anniversary performance

15th April, 2013 (Mon) and


d) Gala with several other international ballet schools (including RBS)

20th April, 2013 (Sat)


Further details of all the above at:



Apparently, all the above performances will offer advance booking for groups. Despite bureaucratic hurdles, I've found the POB group booking system (and Eurostar group booking system) very useful. I'm awaiting clarification about some changes - Will post the details when I have them.



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  • 4 months later...

Overseas groups can now book tickets (minimum 8-10 per performance) for the December Paris Opera Ballet School demonstrations. (Online booking for individual tickets starts on 8th October.) I've made provisional group reservations for the morning and afternoon performances of all three dates. These must be paid for by 30th September or else the reservations will be cancelled. Ticketing only happens after payment- so the sooner the tickets are paid for, the better. Anyone who knows me is welcome to join the group, If you don't know me, I can give details of alternative group bookings - Just drop me a PM.


NB: I'm not making anything myself on these bookings but can't afford to lose anything either. So everyone must pay for their own ticket in advance, though I'm happy to help with the logistics. I also have quite a lot of info about cheap flights, buses, ferries, rideshares, Eurostar and places to stay if anyone's interested. Last year folks travelling to Paris for the weekend preferred to do their own thing in France - but if anyone would like to meet up with some Paris ballet school families, let me know.


Eurostar has just started a sale of £59 return from London to Paris, with good availability around the dates of the performances. The £59 fare will be advertised widely tomorrow, so best to book quickly (http://www.eurostar.com).


Unfortunately, promotional Eurostar individual reservations can't be cancelled, changed or passed on to someone else. With Eurostar group reservations, you book a certain number of tickets (minimum 10) and then can give Eurostar the names of passengers in your group just the day before you travel. So if your plans change, you can pass the ticket on to someone else with no penalty. Normally group Eurostar rates are cheaper than individual ones and with better payment terms (which are now slightly different for companies and groups of friends). But for December, they are more expensive than the promotional rate for individual tickets. I won't be making a group Eurostar reservation but just spoke with their groups dept and can pass on some info to anyone who's considering this option.


If you're travelling from England to France in December, bear in mind that in several recent years, transport was serously disrupted because of bad snow. So if you're planning to attend the morning performances, it's best to arrive at least the day before.



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I was just asked about how to get to France really cheaply for the December performances. The best option at the moment (and the one I'll probably be taking myself) is: megabus.com - £5 each way from London Victoria to Paris. It's a long journey - but if you catch the 23:05 p.m. bus after the Sunday 2nd December performance, you can sleep on the bus and arrive in London Victoria at 7:30 the following morning.



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Yaffa, I don't know if you have previously provided this information on this forum (if you have, apologies) but could you give me some tips about going to see POB in Paris. In particular, how easy is it to book tickets from the UK and where are the theatres (I understand that the company uses more than one) in relation to the Eurostar terminal? Furthermore, where are the best mid-priced seats (say, £40 or £50 seats) in the theatres?




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Aileen -


Sorry if I wasn't clear - My message was just about the performances of the POB School (not the company).


The December demonstrations always take place at the Palais Garnier. It's just a few metro stops away from the Eurostar terminal at the Gare du Nord. There's a thread about seating at the Palais Garnier at: http://www.balletcoforum.com/index.php?/topic/1337-paris-opera-balletpalais-garnier/


The Demonstrations have become something of an institution and give an incredible insight into the system of training at the school. They're held on three separate days. This year they are on: 2nd December (Sun), 9th December (Sun) and 22nd December (Sat).


The performances on each of these three days are identical and feature mostly lower students in the morning (10:30 a.m.) and higher level students in the afternoon (2:30 p.m.). You must book the morning and afternoon performances separately.


All the students in the school take part. Starting with the youngest students and progressing to the graduate class, each grade 'performs' part of their classical ballet class under the direction of their teachers. You also get to see some work from their other classes (character, mime, pas de deux, musical theatre etc.).


Last year, the girls' graduate class was quite small, and each of the girls did a classical variation, which really highlighted individual differences in technique and style etc. - but in general, the performances focus less on individual students and more on the work of the school itself and the different levels. (Progression to the next level in the school isn't automatic... It's apparently quite common for students to have to repeat a year.)


I've been attending the demonstrations regularly for quite a few years now (except for two years ago, when I got stranded in the snow in Calais...).


To answer your question about tickets -- Overseas folks can also by them online and by phone (see http://www.operadeparis.fr for details). The website - though a bit cranky at times - has an English version and you shoudn't have a problem paying by UK credit card. Since the Demonstrations are a school performance, prices are quite reasonable (10 to 28 euros for each of the morning and afternoon session.). But getting tickets at the right time can be tricky. As well as families of the students and other Paris ballet fans, there are always many groups of ballet students and others from all parts of France and other countries. Tickets are released in batches, but sell out very soon after they go online. Public booking doesn't start until early October - by which time flights and Eurostar etc. from England can be quite pricey. Until recently there was no legal way to resell unwanted tickets, with the box office not accepting any returns and many sales (legitimate and by ticket touts) taking place on the steps of the Palais Garnier.


Two years ago, I figured it would be simpler to take out a group subscription to the Paris Opera. It's free and lets you book groups of tickets often several months before public booking opens. You have to buy a minimum of 8-10 tickets in the same price-band per performance. You put a reservation on a specific number of tickets, and they give you a period (around a month) to either pay for the reservation or cancel it. This means that, without putting up any money upfront, I have a guaranteed reservation if I want it - so I can already buy a Megabus round-trip ticket for London to Paris for £10 or something similar... and I have a month to come up with the money and another 9 friends who want tickets.



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When I've been to Paris, I have booked online at the Paris Opera website: http://www.operadeparis.fr/en/ . The downside is that you can choose the area but not specific seats.


The closest metro stations are Opera for the Garnier and Bastille for the Opera Bastille. Here is a link to a metro map: http://www.aparisguide.com/maps/metro.htm


Walking from Gard du Nord to the Garnier would take around 40 minutes. I wouldn't attempt to walk to the Bastille!

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  • 1 month later...

A hurried note to say that individual bookings have started at the Paris Opera Ballet site: http://www.operadeparis.fr


You can select the option to use English, pay using your UK credit card and print out your tickets at home.


However,various aspects of the booking procedure have been cranky to say the least - the tickets in my card disappeared twice for no apparent reason (I was within the 7 minutes for making bookings -- the time is renewed each time you add a ticket to your cart).




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