First Look

Sleeping Beauty

Principal Dancer Adrian Fry & Former Principal Dancer Katherine Lawrence | Photo by Luke Isley

First Look is a program aimed at Jr. High and High school students. Each year, students are invited to a preview performance of Ballet West’s current show. Students get an inside look at the inner workings of a ballet performance before the show opens to the public, a unique opportunity to sit in on Dress Rehearsals of Ballet West active repertory.

This invitation is extended to Students from Grades 7 and Higher, as well as Teachers from any level of teaching.

First Look features the entire evening of repertory, with a pre-performance discussion led by a member of the Ballet West Education staff. We have the ability to accept groups as small as one or two students, teachers attending on their own or large groups attending together. Parent chaperones are welcome as well. We’re very flexible. This must be arranged through the teacher of any particular group. Please share this opportunity with other faculty members who may be interested in taking advantage of this unique event for their students and themselves.

All Performances are at the Jesse Quinney Eccles Capitol Theater, 50 West 200 South, SLC, Utah

Reserve early – seating is limited. To reserve seats or for questions, please contact us at 801-869-6911 or

Groups of 40 or more may request a student/teacher workshop to supplement their attendance at a Ballet West First Look presentation. Availability is limited

Download a printable schedule of First Look


Thursday, October 20 | 6:30 pm

Love Letters! A Duel to the Death! A Powerful Woman! Be whisked away to the Romantic era of the 19th century with the story of young Tatiana, who is in love with the handsome, elegant, and cold Onegin. In her search for a hero, Tatiana learns to be one herself. Sweeping and lush orchestral music accompany John Cranko’s dramatic telling of this daring and unexpected tale of passion and tragedy.

Based on Alexander Pushkin’s final narrative poem masterpiece, Eugene Onegin, Onegin was first imagined as an opera by the great Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. John Cranko created a full-length ballet for the same dramatic story, ingeniously arranging different pieces of Tchaikovsky’s orchestral music to create the score for what is considered one of the greatest story ballets of all time.


Thursday, November 3 | 6:30 pm

Ready for a hoe-down? This evening is the perfect three-course meal! After having to postpone in 2020, the Ballet West premiere of Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo is finally here—now on a triple-bill, paired with two additional powerhouse masterpieces.

The program opens with Concerto Barocco, set to Bach’s Concerto for two violins. It is a soaring example of George Balanchine’s clean, elegant, and musical aesthetic. In 1965, Balanchine generously gave Ballet West founder, Willam Christensen, this beautiful work to help get the fledgling company off the ground. After nearly 20 years since it was last seen on the Capitol Theatre stage, one of Balanchine’s greatest creations returns this season.

Return to a Strange Land is a soulful ode to loss and longing. Using his signature style, both powerfully acrobatic and poetic, renowned Czech choreographer Jiří Kylián created this heart-stopping gem after the sudden loss of his friend and mentor, choreographer John Cranko. Return to a Strange Land is a haunting work to Janacek solo piano pieces for six dancers on a stage strewn with autumn leaves.

Agnes de Mille, the niece of cinematic legend Cecil B. DeMille, choreographed great stage productions such as Oklahoma!, Carousel, and Brigadoon. Her charming 1942 one-act story, Rodeo—set to Aaron Copland’s buoyant, well-known score—represents the very pinnacle of Americana in classical ballet. It’s the sweet, simple story of a cowgirl who longs to be one of the guys, and who loses, but then finds, her heart along the way.

Sleeping Beauty


Thursday, February 9 | 6:30pm

The beloved fairy tale, adored by Utah audiences for decades, gets an opulent makeover with the premiere of sumptuous new sets designed by critically acclaimed French artist and painter Alain Vaes. In 2011, Ballet West Artistic Director Adam Sklute and Resident Designer David Heuvel reconceived the costumes. Now Ballet West unveils the first new sets created for this work since its BW premiere in 1986.

From birth, Aurora is beset by trials—a jealous witch, cursed spindles, pernicious brambles and thorns—and the only chance for redemption for her and her kingdom is true love’s kiss. The fairy of wisdom, a loving godmother, sets out to ensure Aurora’s happiness and the kingdom’s triumph, celebrated with a wedding attended by the most fanciful fairy tale characters ever to grace the stage. Adam Sklute’s unique adaptation of the spectacular Marius Petipa ballet set to Tchaikovsky’s unforgettable score is an evening of nonstop, fanciful adventure.

Snow White


Thursday, April 6 | 6:00pm

Mirror, mirror, on the wall . . . It’s the legendary story of a beautiful princess and her seven adoring companions! See them overcome banishment, curses, and poisoned apples—all while growing closer together and learning the importance of life. Join us as we bring beloved fairy tales to life through the magic of ballet. This lively and entertaining performance will provide proof that there’s more than one way to help our children understand how and why a classic fairy tale becomes a “classic.”

The Wedding


Thursday, April 13 | 6:30pm

Les Noces (The Wedding) is noble, it is fierce, it is simple, it is fresh, it is thrilling.” ~ Washington Post

Three stunning Ballet West premieres! This 100th-anniversary production of Nijinska’s Les Noces is paired with an ode to the stages of love in Jerome Robbins’ In the Night and Gerald Arpino’s Light Rain, a sparkling tribute to youth.

Les Noces, or The Wedding, is a rarely-performed, Diaghilev-era gem. The groundbreaking work, created in 1923 by a woman choreographer and woman designer, is set to a breathtaking and complex Stravinsky score, using a 40-member chorus, four soloists, four grand pianos, and percussion. Jerome Robbins explores the phases of relationships in his In the Night. Three couples present themes of harmony, passion, and naïve young love to Chopin’s Nocturnes for solo piano. Light Rain sparkles and glistens in this third Ballet West premiere of the evening’s repertoire. A fusion of eastern and western music is the backdrop to Gerald Arpino’s dynamic ode to youth and all its passions.

Groups of 40 or more may request a student/teacher Getting the Pointe workshop to supplement their attendance at a Ballet West First Look presentation. Availability is limited