Think of classical ballet, and you’ll probably picture the grand story ballets, based on fairy tales and folk tales and featuring ballerinas pirouetting in “platter” tutus with their cavaliers close at hand.

This is exactly what you get with Maine State Ballet’s spring production of “Sleeping Beauty,” a ballet that premiered at Russia’s legendary Mariinsky Theater in 1890, created by the composer-choreographer team Tchaikovsky and Petipa.

The ballet plays well in the Maine State Ballet Theater, where it opened Friday. The stage’s depth, grand sets (Gail Csoboth) and superb lighting (David Herrman) combine for an absorbing, transporting experience, remarkable in a theater small enough for the audience to hear the swish of the men’s hands on their partners’ waists in supported pirouettes.

Much of the original “Sleeping Beauty” choreography is as iconic as the beloved music. Artistic director Linda MacArthur Miele has preserved this tradition, with new choreography interwoven to suit her dancers.

Princess Aurora’s signature moves showed up in principal dancer Janet Davis’ performance, including dramatic pirouettes into “fish” dives with Prince Florimund (Glenn Davis) in the wedding scene, and sustained balances with her four suitors (Davis, Boomer Druchniak, Michael Holden and Maiki Saito) in Act One’s “Rose Adagio.”

At the third-act wedding, Holden pulled off the Bluebird’s traditional brise vole series breathtakingly, flying from one corner of the stage to the other in these challenging, ankle-beating jumps.

In the ballet’s Prologue, seven fairies visit Aurora’s christening, led by the Lilac Fairy (Christine Williams). Carabosse (Christine Marshall Dow) interrupts with her curse, but the Lilac Fairy amends the curse to the 100-year sleep instead of death.

The colors and textures of the fairies’ tutus made an effective contrast to Carabosse’s black robes and horned crown, and their dancing was light and pretty. Carabosse’s Creatures were suitably near-scary, creeping about with flashing eyes and spider-webbed robes.

As the Fairy of the Enchanted Garden, Marissa Patten-Harris was bright and precise. As the Fairy of the Songbird, Elizabeth Dragoni showed the level of mastery that makes technique disappear into interpretation, in this case birdlike flutters and weightlessness.

The first act opens with the sweeping “Garland Waltz,” one of the ballet’s most familiar musical sections (children will recognize it from the Disney film; adults will get it stuck in their heads). This was performed beautifully by an expanded corps de ballet, all carrying flower garlands.

In Act Two, the Lilac Fairy shows Prince Florimund a vision of the sleeping princess, and he finds and awakens her. Although parents might want to whisper program notes (“Yes, she’s still sleeping, it’s imagination.”), the interpretation was pleasing and emotionally affecting.

Florimund, Aurora and the Lilac Fairy wove among the Dryads (tree spirits) as if among trees. Janet Davis portrayed Aurora’s dream state with beauty and sustain, while Williams gracefully held Glenn Davis at arm’s length from his vision. The two ballerinas’ periodic duet was especially pretty.

Florimund’s journey was effectively accomplished through Glenn Davis’ stage-crossings with drawn sword, as a series of curtains rose to represent the overgrown vines disappearing, ending with a transparent scrim in front of the sleepers.

The Act Three wedding includes visitations by the Wedding Jewels, and four pas de deux by fairy-tale characters. Dancing to a musical sequence with bells, Katie Farwell as the Diamond Fairy was regal and musical with light and elastic jumps.

As the White Cat, Elizabeth Dragoni gave full rein to her flirtatious expressiveness, ably partnered by Maiki Saito’s Puss ‘n’ Boots. Kate Hamilton was a lovely Princess Florine, with strong, precise turns.

Maine State Ballet has done a splendid job with this classic, and the spectacular array of costumes by Csoboth is the icing on this fairy-tale wedding cake.

Jennifer Brewer is a freelance writer, teacher, musician and dancer who lives in Saco.