Sarah Jessica Parker Talks city.ballet.

New York City Ballet's eagerly anticipated AOL On docu-series, city.ballet., went live yesterday. While the twelve short episodes are geared toward a general audience (you already understand a ballet company's ranking system, which the first few segments explain in some detail) and occasionally include clunky imagery (fewer shots of pointe shoes in the subway, please), they're still wonderful peeks into the offstage lives and personalities of the dancers we know and love onstage.

Celebrating the company's dancers, says executive producer and NYCB board member Sarah Jessica Parker, is the (pun intended) point. When Pointe caught up with Parker last night at the city.ballet. premiere red carpet, we discovered that early in the process she'd made sure to pitch the idea not only to Peter Martins and the NYCB staff, but also to the dancers themselves. "I knew this was undoable without the cooperation and the blessing of the dancers," she said. "Our great aim is to paint a portrait of the incredible dedication and commitment and sacrifice that's required in this unusual vocation, and how interesting and complex these people's lives are. They're complete, full people—they're smart and thoughtful and curious, great athletes and great thinkers, lovers of culture and music and math. It's a big risk on their part, so I'm thrilled that they allowed us this kind of access into their lives."

While the series includes plenty of drama—because the professional life of a ballet dancer is inherently dramatic—this is not, Parker emphasized, a reality show driven by the dancers' personal lives. "I think the idea of a reality show diminishes the work, the serious professional dedication that's shown from such an early age," she said. "It had to be documentary-style—they had to tell their own stories. And their lives are infinitely more interesting than anything we could hope to write or create."

While all twelve episodes went live yesterday morning, they'll remain up through the end of December to give you time to work through them (and many of them are worth savoring). Each week, Pointe will highlight a different segment, with quotes from the dancers featured about what went on behind the scenes of the behind-the-scenes docu-series.

Want even more city.ballet.? You can watch all the episodes, and read a bunch of related content, on

Latest Posts

Getty Images

Class of 2020, These Ballet Stars Have a Heartfelt Video Message Just for You

Congratulations to this year's graduating seniors!

You might not have had the chance to take that long planned-for final bow, but we're here to cheer you on and celebrate all that you've accomplished. And we've brought together stars from across the ballet world to help us; check out the video to hear their best wishes for your futures.

To further fête all of the ballet grads out there, we're also giving away 100 free subscriptions to Pointe... plus, one lucky bunhead will receive a personalized message from one of ballet's biggest stars. Click here to enter!

#TBT: Antoinette Sibley and Brian Shaw in "The Sleeping Beauty" (1963)

The charming and exuberant Antoinette Sibley became a principal at The Royal Ballet in 1960, when she was just 21 years old. Sibley dazzled alongside many danseurs during her career, including former principal Brian Shaw, a bravura dancer known for his virtuosic turns and jumps. The two were a natural cast for The Sleeping Beauty's Bluebird pas de deux, captured here in this 1963 film.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Tulsa Ballet in Ma Cong's Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music. Kate Luber Photography, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet.

Updated: Mark Your Calendars for These Online Ballet Performances

Updated on 5/27/2020

Since COVID-19 has forced ballet companies around the world to cancel performances—and even the remainder of their seasons—many are keeping their audiences engaged by streaming or posting pre-recorded performances onto their websites or social media channels. To help keep you inspired during these challenging times, we've put together a list of upcoming streaming events and digital performances.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks