Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Paul McCartney Announces Ocean's Kingdom

Marking his first foray into the world of dance, Paul McCartney has announced the general release of Ocean's Kingdom, commissioned by the New York City Ballet. The recording will be released by Hear Music/Telarc in US on Oct. 4th and by Decca in UK on Oct. 3rd, and is conducted by John Wilson, produced by John Fraser and performed by The London Classical Orchestra.

Ocean's Kingdom is the first time Paul has written an original orchestral score or any kind of music for dance and is the result of a collaboration between Paul and New York City Ballet's Master in Chief Peter Martins, who have worked together to present the world premiere of a new ballet for the company's 2011/2012 season this September.

Though the work is Paul's first ballet, he approached the project in the same way he writes all other music, driven by his heart rather than his head and inspired by feeling rather than specific technical knowledge. While this may have been another new turn for his staggeringly varied career to take, Paul knew it had to be influenced by his own personal experience and that he needed to create a story the audience would find equally compelling and moving.

Paul's first step was to visit the Royal Opera House to see Adolphe Adam's Giselle, danced by the Royal Ballet. Afterwards, Paul met the dancers and discussed the work with them, realising as he did so that he was still without a central theme to his work. Keen to tell a story through his music, Paul decided to focus on the purity of the ocean and within just two months, the first draft had been completed. He then went through the music again thinking specifically of the ballet itself, thereby creating a world featuring distinctive characters and a vibrant underworld kingdom. Finally Paul spent many more weeks working alongside Peter Martins to refine the work, before Peter created the choreography with the NYCB dancers.

An hour long score featuring four stunning movements - "Ocean's Kingdom," "Hall of Dance," "Imprisonment" and "Moonrise" - the ballet tells of a love story within the story of an underwater world whose people are threatened by the humans of Earth. A potently expressive and richly varied work, the score is Paul's most challenging and emotionally complex yet. As he explains: "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 premiere of the ballet Ocean's Kingdom will take place at NYCB's Fall Gala on Thursday 22nd September 2011 while the release of the orchestral score will follow on October 4th, available digitally, on CD and on vinyl. It was recorded in June in London.

The artwork that accompanies the release is equally striking and inventive. Though it seems to suggest a city skyline, it is actually a digital readout of the notes from the ballet score.

Although this is his first orchestral score for dance, Paul is already quite at home in the world of classical music. His back catalogue already carries four classical albums, the most recent of which was the Classical BRIT Award winning 'Ecce Cor Meum (Behold My Heart)'; a work for chorus and orchestra in four movements that was released in 2006.

TRACK LISTING

1. Movement 1 Ocean's Kingdom (14:07)
2. Movement 2 Hall of Dance(16:19)
3. Movement 3 Imprisonment (13:36)
4. Movement 4 Moonrise (12:29)



Review: WONDERLAND at The Music Center At Strathmore Photo
The Young Artists of America always produce wonderful performances, and this one certainly did not disappoint.

Review: BALLET HISPÁNICO: DOÑA PERÓN at Kennedy Center Photo
If you're going to do a history of Eva Perón based entirely on movement, you'd be sure to include that iconic pose of the Argentine First Lady hands aloft at the radio microphones before adoring thousands.

Review: THE TEMPEST at Round House Theatre // Folger Theatre Photo
It’s clear that a tremendous amount of talent, effort, and care has gone into this telling of The Tempest, and those affiliated certainly deserve high praise. Do yourself a favor and go see this production.

Interview: Theatre Life with Lauren Pekel Photo
Today’s subject Lauren Pekel is currently living her theatre life as the Production Stage Manager for what is easily one of the more technically complex productions running in DC theatre right now. Nightly (with two matinees) at Studio Theatre, Lauren calls over 300 light cues and close to 100 sound cues for People, Places and Things. The show runs through December 11th in Studio Theatre’s recently open new space known as the Victor Shargai Theatre. Did I mention her only view of the stage is through two ten-inch TV screens? Read on to see how that all works.


More Hot Stories For You


Video Exclusive: Nova Y. Payton Performs 'Children Will Listen' in INTO THE WOODS at Signature TheatreVideo Exclusive: Nova Y. Payton Performs 'Children Will Listen' in INTO THE WOODS at Signature Theatre
December 1, 2022

Watch an exclusive video of Nova Y. Payton singing 'Children Will Listen' Signature Theatre's production of Into the Woods!

The “King Of Waltz” Bringing Musical Extravaganza To UBS Arena At Belmont Park On September 17The “King Of Waltz” Bringing Musical Extravaganza To UBS Arena At Belmont Park On September 17
November 30, 2022

Petaluma’s premier theater company, Cinnabar Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director Nathan Cummings and Executive Director Diane Dragone, is proud to host a “Swingin’ New Years Eve” concert, Saturday December 31st, at 7:30pm.

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to Attend 45th Annual Kennedy Center HonorsPresident Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to Attend 45th Annual Kennedy Center Honors
November 29, 2022

President Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff will attend the 45th Kennedy Center Honors on Sunday, December 4.

Photos: First Look At A CHRISTMAS CAROL At Ford's TheatrePhotos: First Look At A CHRISTMAS CAROL At Ford's Theatre
November 28, 2022

See photos of Charles Dickens's 'A Christmas Carol' returning to the historic Ford's Theatre with the revelry and magical moments audiences have come to know and love.

King Center & Brevard Music Group Announces R N R - Richard Elliot & Rick Braun This AprilKing Center & Brevard Music Group Announces R N R - Richard Elliot & Rick Braun This April
November 28, 2022

The King Center for the Performing Arts along with Brevard Music Group / Regalitos Foundation announces a new show coming to the King Center! “R n R – Richard Elliot and Rick Braun” performing LIVE at the King Center on Saturday April 1 at 7:30 PM.  Tickets on sale this Friday!