st petersburg ballet

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Jun 17th, 2008, 08:35 PM
  #1
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st petersburg ballet

I have been checking Russian Websites for tickets to the Alexandrinsky Theater for a Ballet performance in late August.. Lowest price is around $54 U.S. credit card charged by email order. In some personal trip reports that I have read, people say they are able to buy tickets at the box office for under $10.00 US. I realize that if I wait, tickets may be sold out, etc. But, if available, is it possible to get tickets at a much lower price than I see on Russian websites?
Thank you, Stu
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Jun 18th, 2008, 02:40 AM
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as you may be aware, russian has twpo-tiered system for most tickets. there are prices for locals and foreigners. Under $10 sounds like it was a price for a local. ability to buy those tickets depends on how strictly they enforce it and your level of russia (or being iwth a russian guide/friend). however, i've seen first hand that sometimes even if you buy the "local" ticket, at the ticket-control the person who's checking tickets may pointedly try to talk to dyou to determine if you are indeed russian. if not, they can ask for id, etc. worst case, they make you buy a new foreigner ticket.
also, unless the performance is really something extraordinary (some huge event, big star, etc), usually you can always buy tickets a few days before. may not be as good of a seat, but still. if you feel really strongly and have to see this performance, but the tickets now. if you are flexible, would be open to seeing something else, etc then you can wait.
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Jun 30th, 2008, 08:52 AM
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lerasp,
Thank you for your very helpful reply.
Stu6
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Jun 30th, 2008, 09:55 AM
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Whatever you do..GO, no matter the cost. Worth EVERY penny.
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Jun 30th, 2008, 10:15 AM
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No - actually there are 3 price tiers. There are 2 prices at the box office - very cheap for locals and pretty cheap for foreigners. (We paid about $7 - but this was 4 years ago.) The highest price is paid for a "tour" and the bulk of the money goes to the people running the tour and hauling you around by a bus. (By the way $54 for a ballet ticket is VERY cheap by US standards.) We got the tickets 2 days before the performance and they had quite a few available.

We bought at the box office in English, got ourselves from the hotel and back afterwards by taxi (and got a free English language program from the usherette - but we tipped her). Afterwards we went to the Hotel Europa for tea and plum cake - very expensive but delicious. And the whole thing was less than the cost of one ticket from a tour.
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Jun 30th, 2008, 03:13 PM
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We went to the ballet at the Alexandrinsky Theater in early June this year. The production was attended by mostly tourists and the company was clearly not the "A" team. You may want to look for tickets to the Marinsky theater instead. If not, it was still worth going, just not amazing.
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Jun 30th, 2008, 04:10 PM
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Obviously - you care which company it is -not which theater. Go only for the Kirov.
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Jul 1st, 2008, 04:49 AM
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I guess you are not a regular ballet goer because if you were you'd have KIROV on the brain and nothing else would do!

Go for the best if you can. I personally wouldn't risk waiting till I got there to buy tix for the Mariinsky. It could be sold out, or maybe only the very expensive or the very cheap tickets would be left. For a once in a lifetime experience it's worth paying a bit extra, and anyway even the middle ranking seats at the Kirov at the foreigners' price are not expensive compared to top dance houses elsewhere.

Cheap seats several rows back high up are on offer on the Mariinsky's own web site at 650 roubles, which is still only c.28usd - and that's to see one of the great companies of the world in a theatre that is worth a visit in itself and which isn't particularly big (ie you're not all that far from the stage even in the cheap seats!).

If you're not too fussed about ballet and just want something to do of an evening, and if you'll be in St P for two or three days, then you could wait until you arrive. There are several outfits that have more or less nightly performances and I don't believe there'd be a problem getting a ticket for one of them.

Cheers.

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Jul 3rd, 2008, 04:39 PM
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To those who have suggested the Marinsky, it appears that it is "dark" in August, the time will be in Russia..
Thanks again for your responses,
Stu
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