This post is mostly words, rather than photos, I will tell you that it is absolutely possible to see the Royal Ballet on a budget.
I can only hope that one day I will be sitting in the VIP row, not that the cheap seats are that bad, but you know what I mean.
First time I found out that you can buy affordable tickets to the ROH through the Time Out’s “1000 Things To Do in London” – it was practically my Bible when I only started exploring London. The book is a treasure, you should absolutely get it, if you’re in love with London and want to explore the never before seen or heard places of the Big Smoke.
In order to be able to buy the cheapest possible ticket, you need to go online to the Royal Opera House website, preferably a few months before the start of the show, ballet, opera and buy the standing tickets. Standing tickets mean that you need to stand during the whole performance, but sometimes there is something like a railing that you can hold onto. You can see it in this photo below.
See the top floor, right next to the ceiling? The cheapest tickets costs from £5 if you can snap it quick. It isn’t that hard standing for the duration of the performance, and yes, the view can be obstructed..by the ceiling, of your fellow standees, but it’s totally worth it if you don’t have money for the front row.
The second cheapest ticket would be a seated one, it won’t cost an arm and leg either, but those seats go fast, they can start at £10-£15, so be sure to be on their website before anyone else. How is that possible? You can easily sign up for their newsletters and special alerts and get them in a timely fashion, then (if the play or a ballet you’re dying to see is extremely popular), you will be sent to a special webpage and you’ll have to stand in an electronic queue. Yes, I have done this a couple of times. If you’re English, you probably know how to queue, and it can be easier online, am I right?
The last time I bought the cheap tickets was to see the ballet “La Fille Mal Gardee” or “The Wayward Daughter”. It was absolutely wonderful and here is where I was sitting.
In Russia, if we go to see a play, a ballet or an opera, we dress for the ocassion, here I saw many styles of clothes, from pricey frocks to the odd Converse, and everyone gets along just well, but I do feel like you need to make a tad more effort if you’re in the close proximity to the stage.
It is a shame I could not take photos, but it was such an amazing, spring flower filled dance that it took my breath away. I don’t know much about ballet but apparently one of the passages was inspired by one of Russian ballerinas from St Petersburg and the Original Ballet Russe.
This ticket cost me £4, the seats in the stalls cost around £100-£150. When you watch the action from here, you can hear the music just as well as those in the front row, you can see everything that’s going on on the stage, it felt magical, I felt rich (I also had an ice cream).
My dream is to see “Turandot” and “Romeo and Juliet”, they show them sometimes here, in ROH, but not very often, and the tickets go fast. When I last wanted to buy the tickets to see Romeo and Juliet, I couldn’t, just because in a few hours there weren’t any. That’s how fast they get sold out.
If you don’t want to see anything on the stage of the Royal Opera House, but you want to see the building from the inside, you can buy a ticket for a tour of the ROH, and it won’t cost you more than going to see The Tower of London, so make a trip to Covent Garden, which is unanimous with the ROH and see the iconic opera house and its auditorium for yourself.
And don’t forget the ice cream.