School Of American Ballet’s Winter Ball Preview

The last we heard there are still a few spots left for The School of American Ballet‘s annual Winter Ball scheduled for Monday night at 7. The event is one of the highlights of the social season (as you can pretty much tell from last year’s photo above), highly anticipated and very well attended by New York’s philanthropic society crowd.

The glamorous black-tie dinner dance held at Lincoln Center’s David H. Koch Theater will feature advanced students performing a unique piece choreographed specifically for the ball.  There is also an afterparty, called The Encore, hosted by SAB’s Young Patrons. The ball typically raises around $1 million for the school (the official school of New York City Ballet), much of which is passed on to future stars in the way of scholarships.

This year the ball has a Russian theme, and with the help of sponsor Van Cleef & Arpels, who recently launched a High Jewellery collection called Bals de Légende, the theater will be transformed into something reminiscent of Le Bal du Palais d’Hiver (the famous Winter Palace Ball held in St. Petersburg in 1903), as the school honors the New York City Ballet’s Russian heritage.

“There was a legendary friendship between Claude Arpels and George Balanchine,” co-chair Betsy Pitts tells, “and so there’s been a close relationship between Van Cleef & Arpels and the New York City Ballet. This year’s ball is a celebration of SAB’s Russian heritage, since Balanchine was born in St. Petersburg and trained at the imperial school.”

“I don’t want to give too much away about the event,” Pitts adds, “but let’s just say it wouldn’t be Russian without vodka and caviar.”

The ball’s gala chairs are Diana DiMenna, Julia Koch and Betsy Pitts, and Young Patron chairs are Amanda Brotman, Brie Bythewood, Chelsea Clinton and Ann-Marie MacFarlane. For tickets to the ball or afterparty, call (212) 769-6609.