Thousands of English speakers will visit Moscow this year. Almost all will go to the Kremlin. A tiny fraction will attend a Moscow ballet. Let’s move those numbers closer to being even. Why wouldn’t everyone go to a Moscow ballet?
- Some people just don’t like the ballet, so a Moscow ballet is no better? Right? Okay they MAY be a lost cause.
- Some people are not comfortable in Moscow at night. This is easy to remedy.
- Some people don’t know how to buy Moscow ballet tickets.
- Some people think you have to dress up to attend a Moscow ballet.
Let’s address each of these so that no one, needlessly, visits Moscow without enjoying a beautiful Moscow ballet performance.
The theater district in Moscow is very centrally located. Three of the best theaters, the Bolshoi Theater, the Stanislavsky Theater and the New Opera Theater are near Pushkin Square and reasonably close to the Teatralnaya Moscow metro station. A “better” hotel (note I said “better” not expensive) will not be far from the Moscow theater district. Even if you are, see below.
If you are a little bit uneasy about navigating, even this area, do one of the following:
- During your Private Moscow tour, ask your guide to take you from your hotel to the theater you want to attend before your first stop of the day. Go back to the theater on your way back to the hotel and notice the return procedure.
- Ask your Moscow hotel to organize a taxi cab which will take you to the theater and be there when the Moscow ballet performance is over to return you to your hotel. Your Moscow Tour Guide can do this for you.
You don’t have to dress up to attend a Moscow ballet. For my Moscow tours I wear a polo shirt, black jeans and Timberland comfortable shoes. I can go to any ballet performance in Moscow in those clothes.
Now for the tickets. You can buy your tickets directly from the theater website if you speak Russian. Some have English versions. Most Moscow theaters require that you register for their website. The easiest way to get good seats at a fair price is to include those in your private Moscow tour. We do it all the time for our clients. Please note due NOT by from online third-party ticket vendors. They are 2 to 3 times face value in cost and sometimes they are fakes. Don’t try to negotiate with “scalpers”. Sometimes they are a good source of scarce tickets but let your Moscow tour guide do it for you.
So what about the people who just don’t like the ballet? If you like Symphony music and beautiful theater interiors (especially the $1 billion renovated Bolshoi Ballet Theater) it might be worth the visit.
Great theater in Moscow is less expensive than in New York City. The quality of the staging, dancing and music is so great that I never hesitate to see a performance repetitively especially in different Moscow theater venues.
Steve Fowler is a pilot for an American, international, legacy airline and a tour planner for RussianTour Guide.com and MyRomeTourGuide.com. He travels extensively around the world but is especially knowledgeable of Moscow, St. Petersburg and Rome.