Segerstrom Center for the Arts announces North American premiere of American Ballet Theatre Woolf Works

Segerstrom Center for the Arts and American Ballet Theatre present the North American Premiere of Wayne McGregor’s Woolf Works at Segerstrom Center for the Arts. For the first time in America, five performances will run from April 11-14. The show, inspired by the writings of 20th century modernist author Virginia Woolf, Woolf Works sold out crowds in London. This marks American Ballet Theatre’s first full-length production by McGregor, featuring a luminous original score by Max Richter, performed live by Pacific Symphony.

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Photo by Asya Verzhbinsky

Joseph Sissens in “Woolf Works”2023 production

McGregor’s award-winning ballet triptych Woolf Works re-creates the emotions, themes and fluid style of three of Virginia Woolf’s novels: Mrs. Dalloway, Orlando and The Waves. With inspiration also enmeshed with elements from her letters, essays and diaries, Woolf Works expresses the heart of an artistic life driven to discover a freer, uniquely modern realism.

Renowned for his ground-breaking choreography and collaborations, McGregor mirrors Woolf’s modernist reduction of neatly ordered narrative, in favor of heightened startling perspectives. He presents each of the three parts as distinct, multi-sensory collages – “I now, I then,” “Becomings” and “Tuesday.” For the final act, “Tuesday,” Gillian Anderson recorded Woolf’s haunting suicide note.

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Photo by Fabrazio Ferri

Hee Seo and Aran Bell in “Woolf Works,” 2023 production

“Woolf Works is not a literal description of Woolf’s writing, said McGregor. “It’s very lavish, with new visualization techniques and a collage structure; a full-on assault and collision of the senses. The idea was to choregraph and design the piece in the spirit of Woolf’s writing, in an unfolding stream of consciousness, rather than as a literal translation of the novel’s narratives.”

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Photo by Asya Verzhbinsky

Artists of The Royal Ballet in “Woolf Works” – 2023

Woolf Works is produced in association with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London. This production was first seen at the Royal Opera House, London on May 11, 2015. At its premiere, Woolf Works was met with outstanding critical acclaim, going on to win McGregor the Critics’ Circle Award for Best Classical Choreography and the Olivier Award for Best New Dance Production.

McGregor CBE is a multi-award-winning British choreographer and director, internationally renowned for trailblazing innovations in performance that have radically redefined dance in the modern era. He is artistic director of Studio Wayne McGregor, the creative nexus that pushes the frontiers of physical intelligence through dance, design and technology. 2023 marks 30 years of the company.

American Ballet Theatre is one of the greatest dance companies in the world. Revered as a national treasure since its founding season in 1940, its mission is to create, present, preserve and extend the great repertoire of classical dancing for the widest possible audience. Headquartered in New York City, ABT is the only cultural institution of its size and stature to extensively tour, enchanting audiences for eight decades in 50 U.S. states, 45 countries and more than 480 cities worldwide. ABT’s repertoire includes full-length classics from the 19th century, the finest works from the early 20th century and acclaimed contemporary masterpieces.

Tickets start at $39. It performs on April 11-14 – Thursday, April 11 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 12 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 13 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, April 14 at 1 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased in-person and by phone at 714.556.2787, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa, or online at www.scfta.org. For Group Sales, call 714.755.0236.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is located at 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. For more information, visit www.scfta.org.


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