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Mark Morris world premiere in Liverpool

Posted on April 25, 2017

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This summer, Liverpool celebrates 50 years of The Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The programme of 13 world premieres – one for each of the album’s 13 songs – includes a work by Mark Morris, plus theatre, art, music and multi-media performances. Sgt. Pepper at 50: Heading for Home will be performed from May 25 to June 16.

Mark Morris. Photograph: Amber Star

The festival opens with the Mark Morris Dance Group in Morris’s new Pepperland. It features a new score by Ethan Iverson, inspired by the songs “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”, “With a Little Help From My Friends”, “A Day in the Life”, “When I’m Sixty-Four”, “Within You Without You” and “Penny Lane”. Iverson’s score will be performed by the MMDG Music Ensemble, with a remarkable sextet of voice, theremin, soprano saxophone, trombone and two keyboards. These will be the only UK performances of the work this year.

Other performances include the John Cage-inspired Mr Kite’s MUSICIRCUS!, in which hundreds of musicians, poets, dancers, circus artists and spectators take part in a free event at Aintree Racecourse, a work by fireworks artists Christophe Berthonneau and Groupe F inspired by “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” and a multi-media performance by Meow Meow and her Sleepless Beauties, featuring a procession to the city’s Metropolitan and Anglican Cathedrals, with 300-strong brass band and candlelit vigil. Milapfest will stage a day-long Beatles Ragafest, featuring some of the world’s top Indian artists, along with a festival village of Indian food, arts and crafts.

For the full programme, visit


Zoë was born in Edinburgh, and saw her first dance performances at the Festival there. She is the dance critic of The Independent, and has also written for The Independent on Sunday, The Scotsman and Dancing Times. In 2002, she received her doctorate from the University of York for a thesis on “Nationhood and epic romance: Ariosto, Sidney, Spenser”. She is the author of The Royal Ballet: 75 Years and The Ballet Lover’s Companion.

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