SF Ballet - Coppelia
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Pas de deux - Nutcracker Ballet Suite - Tchaikovsky
These are some nice little ballet dances I found around youtube.
Until about the second half of the 19th century the role of music in ballet was secondary, with main emphasis being on dance, with music being a compilation of danceable tunes. Writing "ballet music" used to be a job for musical craftsmen, rather than for masters. For example, critics of Tchaikovsky mentioned his writing of ballet music as something demeaning.
From the earliest ballets up to the time of Lully (16321687), the music of ballet was indistinguishable from ballroom dance music. Lully created a style that was separate, wherein the music told a story. The first "Ballet d'action" was staged in 1717. This was a story told without any words. The pioneer was John Weaver (16731760). Both Lully and Rameau wrote "opera-ballets", where the story was party danced and partly sung, but ballet music became gradually less important. The next big step occurred in the early years of the nineteenth century, when principal dancers changed from using hard shoes to ballet pumps. This enabled a more free-flowing style of music to be used. In 1832 Marie Taglioni (18041884) is credited with being the first famous dancer to dance "en pointe". This was in La Sylphide. It was now possible to have music which was more expressive. Gradually dancing became more daring, with men lifting the ballerinas into the air.