ballet music

“Ballet Music” by Humphrey Searle

I don’t imagine that there are many books or articles devoted to the subject of ballet music, or music specifically written for ballet. Some years ago, I came across a book by British composer and author Humphrey Searle, entitled, simply, “Ballet Music”. For a subject that isn’t likely to inspire huge amounts of enthusiasm, I found certain sections to be quite intriguing. Of interest to musicians would be the instructions given to Tchaikovsky by Marius Petipa for the music of the Nutcracker. Professional ballerinas will relate to a dancer’s bewilderment when finally dancing to the orchestra’s performance of the music, after endless rehearsals of hearing it banged out on a piano. Searches show that this book may be available at Amazon, or Google Books (published by Dover Publications).