By Christine Kelly, Staff Writer

The best thing about living in a city of more than 100 colleges? Two words: Student discounts. This little piece of plastic can save you a few shiny pennies in multiple places including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Institute of Contemporary Art, New England Aquarium and Boston Ballet. Determined to squeeze every last discount out of my BU ID, I ventured on a mission to see the Boston Ballet.

#5: Go see the Boston Ballet

Growing up, I was not taken to the ballet like most little girls. I was a tomboy who was more into sports than ballet shoes. My appreciation for ballet really came as I got older and became more of a music nerd.

In high school, I was that kid seen carrying orchestra cases and dropping sheet music all over the hall floors. Music was my life, and my favorite Christmas concert was when we played Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker” medley. It made me able to fully appreciate the skill and concentration it takes to play that music.

Even later as I continued my band geek career and took AP Music Theory, we studied the music from Act II of “The Nutcracker.” I grew fond of Tchaikovsky’s work and the piece’s orchestration as a whole.

Music brought me to the ballet. The production made me stay. Going to see a ballet is much different than listening to the music. You can see the piece the way it was meant to be performed and how it was supposed to come together.

You can’t beat the elaborate costumes, lights and moving set pieces because they really pull together the music and dance into a complete work of art. Ballet has always interested me because of the way the dancers can tell a story without a single word. All they can rely on is their movement and using props and set designs to accentuate those movements.

The experience of going to the ballet is probably one of the classiest things you can do in your college career. It’s nice to take a night off from the Allston crawl to go into the theater district and experience a top notch performance at the Boston Opera House.

Normally a trip to the ballet would be about $60; however, the beauty of being a BU student is that you can get $20 student rush tickets at the box office. All you need to do is show up two hours before the show and pay with cash.

The Nutcracker” is a special show because of the amount of families it attracts.  The entire night, my friend and I stopped and “awww”-ed at all the cute little girls in Christmas dresses wearing princess crowns. After all, nothing gets you into the holiday spirit more than seeing kids ready for Christmas.