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shadling21's avatar

Do you dress up when you go to the ballet?

Asked by shadling21 (6501points) September 18th, 2008

And how dressy is “dressed up”?

I ask because I’ve worn jeans to see shows, myself.

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19 Answers

Les's avatar

I would, but that’s because I like to dress up. I feel like if I’m going to go out to something like a ballet, I don’t want to wear “normal” clothes, I want it to be special. But I guess it depends. I’ve never been to the ballet, but I have been to the opera and multiple Broadway shows, and I always wear a nice dress or skirt. But like I said, I really like dressing up. If I went to a play or the opera with a guy, I would hope that he would wear nice pants and a clean button up shirt. It just feels proper to me.

skfinkel's avatar

Yes. I would get a bit dressed up. It’s special—not like going to a coffee shop. I got tickets this year to the ballet, and each performance will be an opportunity to wear something lovely.

augustlan's avatar

I’ve never been to the ballet, but I’ve been to many musicals and such (in DC). I’ve done it both ways. In jeans, I did feel underdressed, but was much more comfortable. On opening night, I’d definitely dress up.

MacBean's avatar

I’ve gotta admit to sheer snobbery here. I dress up for things like this, and I look down on people who don’t. I mean, I’m not talking about evening gowns and tuxes or anything, but come on. Put in a little effort!

Exactly what you’re seeing and when you’re seeing it makes a difference in my mind, as well. For example, evening shows on Broadway should be dressed up for, but decent jeans (not tatty or sagging off your butt) and a nice shirt are acceptable for a matinĂ©e show.

JackAdams's avatar


Also when I attend the Opera.

I do both, rarely.

flameboi's avatar

Yes I do, I had a gf that is a balletist and whenever she had a show, I used to dress up and I loved it, and for the opera too :)

Sueanne_Tremendous's avatar

I would. I like getting dressed for an event. I am not a posh person nor a snob, but going to events like the ballet or the symphony make me feel a little bit like one when I dress up, and that’s a feeling I like every now and again. Everyone should take time to feel better then everyone else for a few minutes each week. It’s quite the humbling experience. For instance, I was feeling quite high and mighty last week. I had been invited to hear a pianist play at a private show in a private (fancy schmancy) home. I bought a new dress, wore my pearls and my c-f-m pumps and felt so fabulous. Smiling and greeting new people, la te da, I am so wonderful. Happy. Joyous. I excuse myself to use the ladies. I do my business. I look in the mirror. Yep. Spinach in my teeth and a little wedge of chicken stuck in my front tooth. La te not-so-hot.

Get dressed up. Feel special. And then realize you a’int that hot after all….

gailcalled's avatar

If you are in a big city with an Elegant venue, don’t wear jeans, your tutu or satin slippers. Dressing up is a part of the celebration of the art, the artists and the uncountable man- hours that it took to put on the production. Ditto for Opera; less so for theater unless you are in the most expensive seats.

And here in the country, people are pretty casual for the summer performances – all with celebrated and nationally known performances.

sccrowell's avatar

I agree with gail, a definite no no on the tutu <grin> and even though you didn’t ask, if it is an evening preformance? A nice little black dress, pumps and if weather permits, a nice shawl…

marinelife's avatar

I second sccrowell. Perfect outfit. Pearls too, if you have them.

scamp's avatar

I agree with gail and sccrowell .
@sccrowell Little black dress reminds me of your wedding thread. How’d it go?

asmonet's avatar

I tend to wear jeans, flip flops and my rocky horror t-shirts. Then again, I have the coolest venue of all time. :)

gailcalled's avatar

@As; We have Tanglewood (music), Jacob’s Pillow (dance) Berkshire Summer Theatre, Shakespeare and Co., opera, etc. Similar venues, similar outfits (except when it rains, hails, thunders, or mosquitoes arrive. Then we all look like Nanook of the North, particularly if we have lawn seats.)

shadling21's avatar

@sccrowell – I usually attend the matinee. Or even the dress rehearsal, which is open to students for cheap. So I suppose that’s a different situation.

I’m kind of wondering if making ballet shows such a special occasion is actually hurting it as an art form. Less and less people go to see the ballet (especially young folks). Maybe if arts promoters promoted it as a more casual form of entertainment its popularity would be increased?

For the record, I do realize that you have to show respect to the dancers. I’m one, myself.

gailcalled's avatar

@Shadling21:Then you can wear your tutu with impugnity. And you do make a good point.

One of the problems is the cost of tickets; even here in hicksville they are costly.

marinelife's avatar

I think more than the dress issue, the problem is lack of exposure for young people to ballet, opera, orchestra, theatre. I loved it whenever I was exposed to it as a child. I think most kids do. The school systems have gone in the direction of poverty of experience in search of test scores. A hhuge mistake.

Arts organizations should look to bringing in the young.

shadling21's avatar

@Marina – That’s a great suggestion! Lots of people aren’t exposed to these art forms at all during their youth. If people start going to such events at a young age, it may seem more natural for people to go. Once, with a high school French class, I went to see the opera. Prior to that, I had no desire to go whatsoever, and never considered it as a possibility.

So, I agree that lack of exposure and ticket prices are a barrier for many people. The reason I bring up the dress code issue is because I personally find it a hassle. Are there others out there like me? Don’t get me wrong, I like getting dolled up as much as the next girl. But some days I just can’t put in the effort (and some days, it takes quite a bit of effort).

XrayGirl's avatar

personally, I like to dress up. I can wear jeans any time. I like to dress up and take advantage of the event to pull something exciting out of the closet.

Pumkin_Etoile's avatar

I dress up if it is a Gala. Otherwise, I dress nicely, like for a job interview.

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