Dancing Dolls, Wine, and Acrobatics

Going to the ballet doesn’t need to be a rare opportunity, especially for young people.

Going to the ballet is a special occasion. But it doesn’t need to be a rare opportunity, especially for young people. Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Young Patrons Circle is aimed at ballet-goers in their 20s and 30s. Members get discounted tickets and perks like free post-performance wine and food at Ten Mercer. 425’s Kirsten Erwin went to the George Balanchine’s Coppélia performance and had a ball. Here’s her recap of a lovely night, full of wine, music, and of course, dancing. 


Rachel Randall and Nick Lowery from the School of Acrobatics & New Circus Arts perform at Backstage Bash. Photo by Alan Alabastro Photography

Pacific Northwest Ballet just wrapped up their run of George Balanchine’s Coppélia, a comedy about a young couple, an eccentric dollmaker, and an idealized view of village life. The ballet is set in Eastern Europe and features Hungarian and Polish dances.

The dancers captured the comic pantomime beautifully, especially the female lead’s exaggerated robotic movements when she pretends to be the doll Coppélia. The sets were breathtaking as well. In the first act, the buildings were dipped in Easter-egg spring colors, the top of the stage covered in a canopy of wisteria blossoms. But the most atmospheric set was in second act, which takes place in the dollmaker’s workshop. It was wonderfully creepy, with dusty old books and shelves hanging with doll parts.

After the performance, the stage and backstage area was cleared for PNB’s annual Backstage Bash, a post-performance party with drinks, snacks, a DJ, and an aerial acrobatic show. If you’ve always wanted to glimpse a dancer’s viewpoint from center stage (or get down to Bruno Mars on the same surface where the ballerinas took their bows minutes before), be sure to check out this event next year.

PNB will finish the 2016 season with American Stories, which features folk dancing and music by New Orleans jazz musician Allen Toussaint.

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