The Royal New Zealand Ballet is "firmly committed" to Wellington and will continue to hold performances in the capital despite its performance venue closing for earthquake strengthening.

The St James Theatre, which houses the ballet, will be closing for about a year to undergo earthquake strengthening.

Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency spokesman Aaron Alexander confirmed the strengthening would start about this time next year.

"While it's obviously disappointing to have the St James unavailable for a period of time, the end result will be a historic Wellington building that's considerably more resilient for the future," Wreda general manager of venues and partnerships David Perks said.


"In the meantime, we're working with the City Council to maximise the use of the other civic venues we manage, in particular The Opera House and Michael Fowler Centre, to enable us to place as much additional business as possible around the current forward bookings for those venues."

The ballet would hold its performances in the Opera House, but was still looking for a venue for day-to-day business, executive director Frances Turner said.

"We will relocate to a suitable premises in Wellington. We're working with council at the moment to confirm that space," she said.

"The most important thing for us is finding a fit-for-purpose area for the needs that we have, which are rather unique, being a ballet company.

"Together, we have been investigating a range of options which would provide a large fit-for-purpose dance studio to accommodate rehearsal for the full company of 36 ballet dancers, a smaller dance studio, locker rooms and space for physiotherapy and Pilates, office space for administrative staff and an area for our wardrobe [and] costume department."

All up they had about 60 staff to temporarily relocate.

"We're working really well with council at the moment so I think there a very good option on the table and we're just looking forward to confirming it very soon," Turner said.

"The national ballet is firmly committed to Wellington, the cultural capital, and we look forward to returning to our home at the St James once the work is complete."