Five of the world's leading ballet companies will come together for World Ballet Day on Thursday 5 October to broadcast 20 hours of live, behind-the-scenes footage via Facebook Live, following a successful partnership with Facebook in 2016.
The Australian Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, The Royal Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada and San Francisco Ballet will partner for the fourth year in a row to celebrate classical dance and provide viewers around the world with an exclusive look behind the scenes at what life is like at the world's top ballet companies.
There will be the usual mix of glimpses into morning class, rehearsals for upcoming performances and backstage preparations as part of the day-long livestream.
The first World Ballet Day LIVE was held on 1 October 2014 via YouTube. The live broadcast attracted a total of 502,823 views from dance lovers around the world. Allowing unparalleled, behind-the-scenes access, the collaboration revealed each company's approach to morning class and rehearsals, illustrating the unique personalities that characterize five world-class companies.
As the first event of its kind, the 20-hour streaming project garnered critical and viewer acclaim with the New York Times declaring it an “unprecedented bout of internationalism”. World Ballet Day LIVE was inspired by Royal Ballet Live in 2012, a nine-hour live streaming via YouTube and The Guardian website.
World Ballet Day 2016 saw unprecedented engagement with more than 700,000 views during the day and subsequently reached an audience of over 6.7 million on-demand. It was also a trending topic on social media around the world. Working with Facebook, World Ballet Day LIVE was able to reach an even wider audience and engage with both ballet fans and newcomers internationally. For 2017, World Ballet Day and Facebook Live will continue their partnership.
Glenn Miller, Strategic Partner Manager for Facebook, said,
Working with World Ballet Day LIVE is a wonderful opportunity to bring ballet and dance to an international audience. World Ballet Day demonstrates how dance connects all cultures, and we are happy to be able to facilitate such a fantastic initiative.
The hashtag #WorldBalletDay will be used on all social platforms.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.