Tours en l'air organizes ballet-themed escorted holidays to see the best companies perform great ballets in beautiful places. You can join a trip from anywhere. A highly knowledgeable balletomane who has enjoyed 100s of performances in over 20 cities around the world,I speak English, French, and German, and am a Travel Industry Council of Ontario certified Travel Counsellor. I also teach ballet appreciation courses.
For a taste of what our trips are like, follow on facebook.
Tours en l'air Ballet Holidays are offered in partnership with CWT Victor Travel, 101 - 8800 Dufferin Street, Concord, ON L4K 0C5, 416-736-6010, TICO # 1892647


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Monday, January 30, 2012

Trivia Quiz Answer

What choreographer and ballet director changed his name from Abdullah Jaffa Bey Khan?

d) Robert Joffrey

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Weekly Ballet Trivia Quiz

What choreographer and ballet director changed his name from Abdullah Jaffa Bey Khan?

a) Kenneth MacMillan
b) George Balanchine
c) Serge Lifar
d) Robert Joffrey

Friday, January 27, 2012

Ballet is for the birds

Fun collection of great bird moments on Birmingham Royal Ballet's website. Click here.

History of Ballet Course

NEW!!!! History of Ballet Course (Origins to the late 19th century):
Feb. 21 - April 3, 2012, 6-8 pm
No class March 13 (March break week)
Conference room of The National Ballet of Canada's offices at the Carsen Centre, 470 Queens Quay West.

6 weeks, $199 incl. HST.
Week 1: Origins to Romanticism (Taglioni, La Sylphide)
Week 2: Giselle
Week 3: Petipa (Le Corsaire) - this is a bit out of order, but I'm doing it this week because the Bolshoi broadcast of Le Corsaire is on March 11)
Week 4: Ivanov (Nutcracker)
Week 5: Bournonville: La Sylphide
Week 6: Coppelia

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Half-price tickets for National Ballet of Canada Sleeping Beauty

As in years past, the NBOC is offering a great "March Break Special" :
Purchase four orchestra tickets to The Sleeping Beauty on Tuesday March 13th at 2:00 pm, Wednesday March 14 at 7:30 pm or Thursday March 15th at
2:00 pm and save 50% off the regular ticket price.

March Break Special Prices
Orchestra section 1.1 – 4 tickets for $364.00
Orchestra section 1.2 – 4 tickets for $320.00
Orchestra section 1.3 – 4 tickets for $264.00

The offer is for four orchestra seats and must include at least one child 15 or under.
To book your March Break Special tickets call 416-345-9595.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Trivia Quiz Answer

In which country were police officers ordered in 2008 to take ballet classes with the aim being to “develop an ability to regulate traffic and achieve elegance in their movements, which will not only be agreeable to the eyes but could also help drivers waiting at a red light get rid of their stress or sadness”?

b) Romania

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ballet Trivia Quiz

In which country were police officers ordered in 2008 to take ballet classes with the aim being to “develop an ability to regulate traffic and achieve elegance in their movements, which will not only be agreeable to the eyes but could also help drivers waiting at a red light get rid of their stress or sadness”?

a) Russia
b) Romania
c) Ukraine
d) Denmark

answer tomorrow!

Happy Birthday, Mr. B.!

In honour of Balanchine's birthday today I am posting this short clip from Boston Ballet with a really cool clip from Symphony in 3 Movements:

Friday, January 20, 2012

Steven McRae learns Ashton's Les Patineurs

A fascinating video about Ashton's Les Patineurs (one of the first ballets I saw live as a child watching the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and which contributed to my balletomania!), featuring Steven McRae of the Royal Ballet being coached in the role of Blue Boy. Just because great dancers make this stuff look easy in performance, don't for a minute think that it is!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A treat for @Guillaume Cote fans

Don't forget, you can see him and the other KINGS OF THE DANCE live on our New York trip!

In Memoriam Rudi van Dantzig 1933-2012

Dutch National Ballet announced today that one of their founding choreographers, Rudi van Dantzig, who made great contributions to ballet in the Netherlands and worldwide, died this morning in Amsterdam. DNB produced this excellent tribute video:

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Kings of the Dance in NY - still 1 spot available

If you are interested in our Kings of the Dance/New York City Ballet trip, there is still one spot available. Please get in touch ( ASAP. And here's something to whet your appetite:

Monday, January 16, 2012

Ballet Trivia Quiz Answer

“How many tacks are there in a classical tutu?”

d) about 300

A tack is used to make the layers stay together, with the tutu hoop, which make that flat crisp look on a classical tutu. You use a long needle and thread and start on the lowest under layers and work your way to the top layer.

Thanks to Boston Ballet's blog, Footnotes, for this!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Weekly Ballet Trivia Quiz

How many tacks are there in a classical tutu? (that's "tacks" in the "stitch" sense, not in the thumbtack/pushpin sense!)

a) 30
b) 100
c) 200
d) 300

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Stuttgart Munich Ballet Trip now booking - Deadline Jan 30

Carlson Wagonlit Victor Travel
101 - 8800 Dufferin Street, Concord, ON L4K 0C5
TICO Ontario registration #1892647

Tours en l'air
Ballet Holidays
escorted by
Canada's Word Lady, Katherine Barber

Stuttgart and Munich
20 - 30 April 2012
11 days, 10 nights
6 ballet performances

Sightseeing in beautiful southern Germany
and ballet masterpieces performed by Stuttgart Ballet,
Birmingham Royal Ballet, and Bavarian State Ballet

Fri. 20 April: STUTTGART
Arrive Stuttgart; check in to 3-star City Hotel, 10 minutes walk from the opera house. **Upgrade to 5-star Schlossgarten Hotel, 4 minutes walk from opera house, available on request.

Sat. 21 April: STUTTGART
Morning: private guided walking tour of historic Stuttgart, including the weekly flower market. Afternoon at leisure to visit one of Stuttgart's renowned art galleries, visit the Mercedes-Benz or Porsche museum, or botanical garden and zoo. Evening: Welcome 3-course dinner followed by performance of
Stuttgart Ballet, The Lady and the Fool (Cranko), Gaité Parisienne (Béjart).

Sun. 22 April: STUTTGART
Day excursion by train (½ hr) to the palace of Ludwigsburg, the Versailles of southern Germany. Private guided tour, visit to the costume museum and magnificent “Blooming Baroque” gardens. Evening: 3-course dinner.

Mon. 23 April: STUTTGART
Morning: Watch Stuttgart Ballet company class.  
Rest of day at leisure. You can relax in one of Stuttgart's mineral baths, stroll in the lovely Schlossgarten, or have some classic coffee and cake at a cafe.

Tues. 24 April: STUTTGART
Day trip by private luxury coach. Morning: the beautiful medieval university town of Tübingen (45 minutes from Stuttgart). Private guided 2-hour walking tour, then leisure time for lunch and more exploring. Afternoon: transfer (45 minutes) to Schloss Solitude. Private guided tour of the castle. 
Visit to John Cranko's grave. 
Return to Stuttgart (25 minutes). Evening at leisure.

Wed. 25 April:
Morning: check out of hotel. Private transfer by luxury coach to Augsburg (1 hr 40 minutes). Watch Ballet Augsburg company class. Watch rehearsals (subject to scheduling) or visit the historic city of Augsburg at your leisure. Lunch with Ballet Augsburg Artistic Director Robert Conn. Private transfer to Munich (1 hour). Check in to 3-star Domus hotel, 10 minutes walk from Nationaltheater. **Upgrade to 4-star Platzl Hotel, 4 minutes walk from theatre, available on request. Evening:
Birmingham Royal Ballet: Take 5 (Bintley), The Dream (Ashton), Checkmate (de Valois)

Thurs. 26 April: MUNICH
Morning: private guided walking tour of the historic centre of Munich and private backstage tour of the Nationaltheater. Rest of day at leisure. Suggested activity: visit the adjacent palatial former residence of the Bavarian monarchy, with its jewel-like 18th-century theatre. Evening:
Bavarian State Ballet: Gods and Dogs (Kylian), Goldberg Variations (Robbins)

Fri. 27 April: MUNICH
Morning: Our private luxury coach transports you to the beautiful Bavarian Alps, where you will visit the exquisite Linderhof castle and grounds, one of “Mad” King Ludwig II's numerous building projects. Visit the picturesque town of Oberammergau, then the spectacular baroque monastery of Ettal. Return to Munich for the evening performance of
Bavarian State Ballet Illusions – Like Swan Lake, John Neumeier's version of Swan Lake, which interweaves the stories of Ludwig and Tchaikovsky with the traditional story of the ballet.

Sat. 28 April: MUNICH
Morning: Private guided tour of Nymphenburg castle in Munich. Afterwards, stroll at your leisure in the beautiful surrounding park, or visit the nearby Botanical Garden. Rest of day at leisure. Evening: Bavarian State Ballet: Scènes de Ballet, 5 Brahms Waltzes, Voices of Spring (all Ashton), Song of the Earth (MacMillan)

Sun. 29 April: MUNICH
Day at leisure. Suggested activity: visit one of Munich's celebrated art galleries and museums. Evening: 3-course farewell dinner, followed by 
Bavarian State Ballet: Wherever he looks (Mannes), Daphnis and Chloe (Kohler)
For videos of the Munich repertoire, click here.

Mon. 30 April: MUNICH
Check out of hotel and depart Munich.

Total Package CA$3,499 per person based on double occupancy
Single supplement: CA$500
** With hotel upgrade $4,399 per person double occupancy,
single supplement $800
All prices valid till 30 January 2012
LAND-ONLY PACKAGE allows you the flexibility of arranging
travel from your most convenient departure point,
on the dates and times you prefer,
and to extend your stay if you wish.
Victor Travel's experienced agents will be happy to
assist you with flight arrangements.

Package price includes:
5 nights twin share accommodation in the centrally located 3-star City Hotel in Stuttgart and 5 nights in the 3-star Domus Hotel in Munich
(travellers wishing to share will be put in touch with one another)
Daily breakfast
Premium orchestra seats for 6 ballets
Stuttgart Ballet and Ballet Augsburg company class
Private guided tours of Ludwigsburg Residenzschloss, Schloss Solitude, Nymphenburg Palace, Linderhof Castle, Nationaltheater opera house in Munich
Private walking tours of Tubingen, Stuttgart, and Munich
Top 10 Munich pocket guidebook and map
Transportation by public transit between Stuttgart and Ludwigsburg
Day excursion by luxury coach to Tubingen and Schloss Solitude
Day excursion by luxury coach to the Bavarian Alps (Linderhof, Ettal, Oberammergau)
Three 3-course dinners; one 3-course lunch
Ballet enrichment program: ballet notes and informal pre-performance talks and post-performance reviews with tour leader

Please note that this program must be sold as a package.
We cannot offer individual components separately
or break the package into shorter installments.

Not included:
Meals and transfers not specifically mentioned in this itinerary
Beverages with meals
Items of a personal nature, e.g. phone calls
Cancellation and hospital/medical insurance

Terms and Conditions:
Non-refundable deposit of CA$1750 per person is required at time of registration, no later than 30 January 2012, to secure your space for this package**.
Single supplement and optional cancellation and hospital/medical insurance are also payable at this time.
Final payment due 5 March 2012, and total package price is fully non-refundable.
All cancellations must be received in writing at Carlson Wagonlit Victor Travel to the attention of Lucy Nati (
RBC out-of-province health insurance and trip cancellation insurance are available through Victor Travel and STRONGLY RECOMMENDED. Price will vary according to birthdate. Premium must accompany the deposit and is non-refundable.

For more information:


**The deposit is fully refundable in the event of cancellation of the trip by the travel agent

Monday, January 9, 2012

Ballet Trivia Quiz Answer

What young dancer new to New York City Ballet did Jerome Robbins describe as "a lamppost with feet and teeth"?

c) Jacques d'Amboise

Interesting article about tutus

Click here for an interesting article about tutus recently posted on the blog "Ballet to the People".

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Weekly Ballet Trivia Quiz

What young dancer new to New York City Ballet did Jerome Robbins describe as "a lamppost with feet and teeth"?

a) Edward Villella
b) Ib Andersen
c) Jacques d'Amboise
d) Damian Woetzel

Answer will be posted tomorrow.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A treat for fans of Sue-Jin Kang

 The new book about Robert Tewsley, a favourite partner of  Sue-Jin Kang, is out, and promises to be a real treat for fans of the Korean ballerina.

The book contains 22 pictures of Kang, many of them full-page images, as well as several pages of text about Robert Tewsley’s very special partnership with her. 

Tewsley was Kang’s favorite partner at the height of her career. Together, they formed a legendary pair, starring in classic dramatic ballets including “The Lady of Camellias,” which became a signature work of the couple.

“What was so special about Sue-jin is that every time we danced together it was different. There was this unspoken trust: we knew that whatever happened, the other would react and adapt. We could be spontaneous,” Tewsley recounts in the book. “From the very beginning, we understood each other without words.”

The book contains some gorgeous and rare pictures of the couple, particularly notable being a scene from Swan Lake.
It can be ordered from anywhere in the world from Click here.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Ballet Trivia Quiz Answer

Which rock star takes ballet classes to improve his balance?

b) Mick Jagger

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Weekly Ballet Trivia Quiz

Which rock star takes ballet classes to improve his balance?

a) Bono
b) Mick Jagger
c) Sting
d) Pete Townshend

Power struggles in Russian ballet

A fascinating article by Luke Jennings about what's really going on with the Mikhailovsky Ballet, Nacho Duato, Osipova and Vasiliev etc. Click here.