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Debutantes Prepare for Opera Ball Waltz

Image: Debutantes prepare for the opening ceremony of the Vienna Opera Ball
Debutantes prepare for the opening ceremony of the Vienna Opera Ball at the State Opera in Vienna, Austria, on Feb. 27. GEORG HOCHMUTH / EPA

The Opera Ball is opened by the Austrian president and features a musical program with soloists and artists from the Vienna Philharmonic and State Ballet before the debutantes lead into the festivities with a Strauss waltz.

The 18-to-24-year-olds spend weeks rehearsing for a performance that lasts just three or four minutes but has a huge audience at home and abroad.

The traditional ball takes place on Feb. 27, with tickets starting at $340 and a box as much as $25,000.

Image: Workers lay the dance floor in the opera house in Vienna
Workers lay the dance floor in the opera house in Vienna on Feb. 25. HEINZ-PETER BADER / Reuters
Image: Members of the opening committee perform during a rehearsal for the Opera Ball in Vienna
Members of the opening committee perform during a rehearsal for the Opera Ball in Vienna on Feb. 23. HEINZ-PETER BADER / Reuters
Image: Members of the opening committee peform during the final rehearsal for the Opera Ball inside the opera house in Vienna
Members of the opening committee perform during the final rehearsal for the Opera Ball inside the opera house in Vienna on Feb. 26. HEINZ-PETER BADER / Reuters
Image: Members of the opening committee dance past a lost shoe during the final rehearsal for the Opera Ball inside the opera house in Vienna
Members of the opening committee dance past a lost shoe during the final rehearsal for the Opera Ball inside the opera house in Vienna on Feb. 26. HEINZ-PETER BADER / Reuters