Enchanting Elegance: Boston Ballet Presents ‘Cinderella’

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As a total Disney geek, I am always looking for ways to experience a little bit of magic when I’m away from the theme parks. One of my favorite ways to do this is through ballet and theatrical productions that tell different versions of the classic fairytales seen in the theme parks, like Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella.

Cinderella is my favorite Disney princess and I love seeing how her story has been translated into all different art forms over the years. As such, I’m thrilled that this production has returned to Boston Ballet for the company’s 60th season this year, and that I was able to attend a performance on opening night.

Cinderella at the Boston Opera House and the Magic Kingdom
Boston Opera House lobby (left), Cinderella mosaic at Walt Disney World (right).

This version of the story was first performed by Sadler’s Wells Ballet (now The Royal Ballet), under the creative direction of renowned ballet dancer and choreographer, Sir Frederick Ashton with a musical score by Sergei Prokofiev.

Boston Ballet last performed Cinderella in 2019, but even if you caught a performance then, this year’s production has been revamped with breathtaking new costumes and sets purchased from The Royal Ballet. The sets, designed by Toer van Schayk, and costumes by Christine Haworth, were expertly refurbished ahead of their debut last night for Boston audiences…and it shows. The layers of backgrounds created a detailed and immersive experience for each of the story’s settings from any seat in the audience, and the costumes in this production are absolutely stunning.

Boston Ballet Cinderella
Ji Young Chae in Sir Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella, photo by Liza Voll, courtesy of Boston Ballet.

Every act of this ballet was truly captivating thanks to the incredible performances by the company’s dancers and the Boston Ballet Orchestra. On opening night, the titular character was danced by Ji Young Chae, alongside Jeffrey Cirio as The Prince. Especially memorable was the moment when Cinderella arrives at the ball and is greeted by The Prince, who takes her hand as she descends the stairs at the entryway entirely en pointe.

Paul Craig and John Lam took on the roles of the stepsisters, adding several moments of comedic relief while still showcasing impressive dancing and acting, throughout the performance. Viktorina Kapitonova’s performance as the Fairy Godmother, along with Fairy Spring Kaitlyn Casey, Fairy Summer Haley Schwan, Fairy Autumn Chisako Oga, and Fairy Winter Lauren Herfindahl included some of the most mesmerizing group choreography sequences I’ve seen in this type of ballet. I would also be remiss to leave out Sun Woo Lee, whose role of The Jester brought with it unexpected moments of awe, especially through the character’s leaps and stage presence.

Boston Ballet Cinderella
Boston Ballet in Sir Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella, photo by Liza Voll, courtesy of Boston Ballet

Tips for Attending Boston Ballet

Make reservations for dinner and grab a bite before showtime. Boston’s theater district is home to several outstanding restaurants offering something for every taste and budget before you catch a performance of Cinderella. I tend to go for Mexican food at Fajitas and Ritas, or seafood right across the street from the Boston Opera House at Legal Crossing.

Taking the T is typically the easiest way to get to the Boston Opera House, especially if you are coming from outside of the city. You can find parking in nearby garages as well. For directions, check out the Boston Opera House website.

I recommend dressing up but don’t put too much pressure on yourself. For a fun night out, I always love getting at least a little dressed up for any ballet, but it’s important to note that if this isn’t your thing, there is actually no dress code. Many people dress in roughly business casual looks, but if you’d prefer to go all out in a cocktail dress or gown, or simply wear jeans and a t-shirt, that’s totally fine, too.

Arrive early to The Boston Opera House. The lobby opens 45 minutes before performances are set to begin, and you may want this time to use the restroom, purchase a drink or souvenir, and to simply take in the gorgeous architectural details inside the space. If you need to pick up your tickets at Will Call, give yourself at least a half-hour in case there is a line.

Cinderella program at Boston Ballet

Tickets for Cinderella

Boston Ballet’s Cinderella runs through Sunday, March 24, 2024, with showtimes at 7:30 PM and weekend matinees at 1:30 PM.

Tickets are available online at bostonballet.org, and you can use promo code BBTIX40 for $40 tickets to select performances.

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*I was provided with complimentary tickets to Boston Ballet’s ‘Cinderella.’ All opinions expressed in this post are my own.  

**Featured image caption (right): Ji Young Chae in Sir Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella, photo by Liza Voll, courtesy of Boston Ballet. 

3 thoughts on “Enchanting Elegance: Boston Ballet Presents ‘Cinderella’

  1. My 7 yr old wants to wear her Disney Cinderella dress, do you think other kiddos will do that too? i don’t want her to feel silly when we arrive.

    1. Yes, I think that’s totally fine and really cute! There weren’t a ton of kids dressed up when I went (not like Disney on Ice for instance), but I definitely saw a few and think that would be adorable.

      1. Phew, thank you so much! It is a worry off my shoulders that you saw other kiddos dressed up! Thank you so much!

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