Royal Ballet dancers Fumi Kaneko and Joseph Aumeer during World Ballet Day 2019

Gavin Smart, Courtesy ROH

Calling All Ballet Lovers! World Ballet Day 2020 Is on October 29

While very little about this year has felt normal, we're excited to share that one of the dance community's landmark events is returning despite the pandemic. October 29 marks World Ballet Day 2020.

This year's iteration of the annual social media extravaganza features three of the world's leading companies: The Royal Ballet, The Australian Ballet and the Bolshoi Ballet. Additional participating companies, which include American Ballet Theatre, Houston Ballet, National Ballet of Canada and Boston Ballet, have just been announced. Last year's World Ballet Day was the biggest yet, reaching over 315 million social media users around the world.

This year's celebration couldn't come at a better time; audiences are hungrier than ever to see dancers at work. After many months out of the studio and off the stage, World Ballet Day provides an exciting opportunity for ballet lovers to see how companies across the world are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Each company will livestream segments of company class, rehearsals and interviews with dancers in accordance with their respective local public health guidelines. "Now, more than ever, the digital celebration of dance promises to unite us all as we face new, shared challenges across the world," says Royal Ballet director Kevin O'Hare, adding that he looks forward to "bringing our art form to audiences who are missing live performances."

Viewers can tune in to World Ballet Day's Facebook page or website, or to the participating companies' Facebook and YouTube pages, to watch the livestreams. For those in China, World Ballet Day is available via Tencent video. (And don't forget to post a video of your pirouettes to social media for the #WorldBalletDay 2020 challenge—check out the video above for details.)

Please see the current schedule below, and note that it is subject to change. And if you're in the U.S. and not willing to stay up all night for the sake of ballet, don't fear—the streams will remain on Facebook and YouTube after they're live.

2 am GMT/10 pm ET—1:15 am ET (on October 28): The event kicks off with an inside look at The Australian Ballet.

7 am GMT/3 am ET: Get a taste of Russia with this glimpse of the Bolshoi Ballet.

11 am–3 pm GMT/7 am–11 am ET: The Bolshoi will pass the baton to the Royal Ballet. Viewers will have the chance to see the company prepare for The Royal Ballet: Live, the troupe's first series of live performances after a seven-month hiatus.

Guest Companies (click here and scroll down for scheduled times)
  • Finnish National Ballet
  • The Royal Danish Ballet
  • La Scala Theatre Ballet
  • Polish National Ballet
  • Stuttgart Ballet
  • Paris Opéra Ballet
  • Wiener Staatsballett
  • Opera Sofia
  • Staatsballett Berlin
  • Dutch National Ballet
  • English National Ballet
  • Royal Academy of Dance
  • Birmingham Royal Ballet
  • Northern Ballet
  • Scottish Ballet
  • Royal New Zealand Ballet
  • Singapore Dance Theatre
  • West Australian Ballet
  • Queensland Ballet
  • National Ballet of Japan
  • The Mikhailovsky Theatre
  • Joburg Ballet
  • Korean National Ballet
  • Mariinsky Ballet
  • Hong Kong Ballet
  • National Ballet of Canada
  • Ballet Concierto de Puerto Rico
  • Ballet Nacional de Cuba
  • Houston Ballet
  • Boston Ballet
  • Såo Paulo Dance Company
  • Cape Town City Ballet
  • Pacific Northwest Ballet
  • Acosta Danza
  • Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre
  • America Ballet Theatre
  • Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal

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