However, at two-hours plus, these full-length narrative works also demand a lot of attention, concentration and even knowledge, which is a bit too much for the youngest tots.
This is where English National Ballet has come up with the right formula by joining forces with its School to present a series of short versions of the most famous classics especially adapted for children from three years old onwards.
Called My First Ballet, the series has already tackled Cinderella, Coppelia and Swan Lake. This year Sleeping Beauty returns to the Peacock stage before embarking on a nationwide tour.
The story is shortened and simplified but keeps its bare bones: Princess Aurora is cursed by the evil fairy Carabosse to prick her finger and die on her 16th birthday. She gains a reprieve from her godmother, the Lilac Fairy, who fates her to sleep until awakened by true love’s kiss.
And of course, this mini-version of Sleeping Beauty keeps Tchaikovsky's ravishing and much-loved score.
Choreography for My First Ballet: Sleeping Beauty comes from ENB's Ballet Master and Repetiteur Antonio Castilla, who decided to include characters from other fairy tales, such as Red Riding Hood and Puss in Boots, who befriend the Prince and accompany him on his journey to find true love.
The work is performed by students of the English National Ballet School, clearly eager to use the opportunity to gain stage experience prior to their third and final year before graduation.
To coincide with My First Ballet: Sleeping Beauty, English National Ballet will host on-stage creative dance workshops, aimed at providing a gateway into the world of ballet. Children and their adults will have the opportunity to learn extracts from the production and bring the characters to life with English National Ballet dance artists and get up close to costumes and scenery.
ENB's My First Ballet has been going from strength to strength since it began in 2012. It is the ideal way to introduce little children to the magic of ballet and for the slightly older ones a great outing for the Easter holiday.
Age Guidance: recommended for ages 3+
Family Tickets available
My First Ballet: Sleeping Beauty will be at Richmond Theatre 18 & 19 May
|What||ENB, My First Ballet: Sleeping Beauty, Peacock Theatre Preview|
|Where||Peacock Theatre, Portugal Street, London, WC2A 2HT | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Holborn (underground)|
16 Apr 19 – 27 Apr 19, Mornings 10:30 or 11:00; afternoons 14:00 or 15:00; eves 17:00 or 17:30 Dur.: 1 hour approx
|Website||Click here to book via de Peacock|