Ballet is a distinct dance performance art, which originated in Italy. The use of the word, such as "going to the ballet," implies a theater show in which a production showcases the dance form. Theater is a less specific term, signifying a stage production, in which a cast of actors perform live, often including dance and song as in a musical. Ballet and theater share many similarities in both production and reception.
The default destination to take in an evening of professional theater is Broadway. Likewise, if you want to enjoy an evening at the ballet, the commercial venue for this form of entertainment is Broadway as well. New York City's Times Square theater district and the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts are both located on Broadway.
Seating and Pricing
When you purchase a ticket for the theater or ballet, you are required to select a specific seat within a multi-tiered and ranked theater. Each ticket allows you a specific seat, and the price of that ticket is valued based on the seat's position and proximity to the stage. Discounts notwithstanding, the most expensive seats are those that offer the best views of the action. In most theater seating charts, it is the orchestra that commands the highest ticket prices, followed by the mezzanine level.
A live show would be incomplete without live musical accompaniment. Ballet shows, just like theater productions, bring live stage and live music together through the use of an orchestra. Musical orchestras consist of dozens of musicians playing a string, brass, woodwind and percussion instruments and led by a conductor. Orchestras are usually tucked in a recessed or elevated cove toward the front of the stage, so as not to distract visually from a performance.
Several moving pieces are involved in producing professional ballet and theater. In addition to stage performers, the production is made possible through the efforts of a stage crew, set and costume designers, directors, choreographers and several others working behind the scenes. Productions of this level have budgets ranging from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars and are considered high-culture entertainment. Performers in this level of theater and ballet are required to become members of theater unions. These union groups advocate for fair wages and benefits for performers and represent members in charges of abuse and unfairness against theater production companies.
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