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A great northern alliance: first direct and Northern Ballet

What could a bank and a ballet company possibly have in common? As it turns out, quite a lot.

Innovation, passion and commitment are just three values first direct and Northern Ballet share, which is why we feel our partnership is a match made in heaven.

A class act

We've been a proud sponsor of Northern Ballet since 2010, and over the years, hundreds of our customers and their families have been spellbound by their incredible live shows and exclusive events

Considered trailblazers in the world of ballet, not only do its elaborate stage shows feature word-class performers, but also stunning visuals; our sponsorship is one factor in helping Northern Ballet acquire the very best talent from the lighting technicians to the set designers, as well as the dancers.

Schools join in

Northern Ballet dedicates lots of its time to uncovering fresh talent, and has nurtured young dancers from a range of backgrounds.

Its START programme engages over 800 children annually from 24 different schools across Yorkshire, opening their eyes to the theatre and bringing them to workshops and performances.

The children from St. Anthony's School in Leeds were treated to a sneak-preview performance of Elves & the Shoemaker. Here's what they had to say:

"When I go back to school, my friends will say, 'Was it rubbish?' And I'll say, 'No, it was great!' Before I thought it was for posh people and for girls; it changed my opinion by a million miles. I'd recommend it to everyone."

"It was better because they didn't talk."

"11 out of 10."

"I loved the background scenes - better than a pantomime."

"People think ballet's quite posh because the people in it are quite posh."

Hot on the heels of Elves & the Shoemaker, Northern Ballet has brought to life another children's classic: Goldilocks & the Three Bears. Discover what happened when we invited a group of customers to enjoy an exclusive performance.