Sir Paul McCartney & Peter Martins collaborate on world premiere for New York City Ballet

February 25, 2011

Ballet, Ballet News, Press Releases

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The New McCartney/Martins Ballet to Premiere

at NYCB’s Fall Gala on Thursday, September 22, 2011

New York City Ballet announced today that Sir Paul McCartney and NYCB’s Ballet Master in Chief Peter Martins will collaborate on a World Premiere ballet for the Company’s 2011-2012 season. The new ballet, which will premiere at NYCB’s Fall Gala performance on Thursday, September 22, 2011, will mark the first time that Sir Paul has written an original orchestral score for dance.

In making the announcement, Martins said that he and Sir Paul met at the School of American Ballet’s Winter Gala in 2010 and shortly thereafter began discussing the possibility of working together on a ballet.

“Like the rest of my generation, I grew up being a huge fan of the Beatles so I was thrilled to meet him,” said Martins. “After I got to know him a bit, and knowing of his great love of composing classical music, I asked if he might be interested in doing something for New York City Ballet, and I am ecstatic that he has agreed to write a score for us.”

Sir Paul said: “I am always interested in new directions that I haven’t worked in before. So I became very excited about the idea. When I got back to England after meeting Peter I started writing music and am now in the very final stages of the orchestral score.” He continued, “What was interesting was writing music that meant something expressively rather than just writing a song. Trying to write something that expressed an emotion – so you have fear, love, anger, sadness to play with and I found that exciting and challenging.”

The September 22 Fall Gala performance will also include George Balanchine’s Union Jack, the extravagant tribute to Britain that features nearly all of NYCB’s dancers. “We are so honored to have Paul working with us that I thought we would pay tribute to this extraordinary man by performing Union Jack on the same program.” said Martins.

Following the World Premiere performance on September 22, NYCB will give additional performances of the new McCartney/Martins ballet during the course of the 2011-2012 season. The full schedule of performances, as well as details on the production design, will be announced at a later date.

Tickets for New York City Ballet’s 2011-2012 season will go on sale later this year. NYCB’s 2011-2012 season will feature fall performances from September 13 through October 9, 2011; winter performances from January 17 through February 26, 2012; spring performances from May 1 through June 10, 2012; and the annual holiday season of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ from November 25 through December 31, 2011.

All performances will take place at the David H. Koch Theater, which is located on the Lincoln Center Plaza at Columbus Avenue and 63rd Street. For general information on tickets for any New York City Ballet performance call 212-870-5570, or visit

Major support for new work is provided by members of the New Combinations Fund.

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