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Film Composer Michael Giacchino to Premiere Ballet in Seattle

The "Up" and "Lost" composer will draw from his music for The Wachowskis' 2015 space opera "Jupiter Ascending."

Pacific Northwest Ballet will premiere a new work with music by film composer Michael Giacchino on Nov. 2 at Seattle Opera House’s McCaw Hall.

Designed and choreographed by PNB company dancer Kyle Davis, “A Dark and Lonely Space” will feature symphony orchestra, soprano soloist and chorus, a spokeswoman said.

Giacchino, an Oscar winner for “Up” and an Emmy winner for “Lost,” said the ballet will feature five dramatic movements drawn from his music for The Wachowskis’ 2015 space opera “Jupiter Ascending.”

The Wachowskis have epic ideas and characters who traverse large landscapes and seek all kinds of adventures that aren’t really bound to the linear world,” the composer said. “The idea of having Kyle Davis choreograph dance pieces to the movements that were inspired by their work is another way to explore those grand themes. It’s gratifying to have the music take on another art form.”

Pacific Northwest Ballet’s music director, Emil de Cou, said the collaboration came about after he worked on two premieres of Giacchino music with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center and Wolf Trap. Giacchino’s tribute to the 60th anniversary of NASA, “Voyage,” debuted in Washington on June 1; the orchestra played his “Jurassic World” score live to picture that same week.

“This new work is the perfect blend of Michael’s brilliant music and the combined forces of instrumentalists, singers and dancers. It will be a powerful theatrical event,” de Cou said.

Dancer-choreographer Davis called Giacchino “one of today’s true greats in American music.”

The “Jupiter Ascending” score was not conceived in the usual movie-music manner, Giacchino pointed out. The Wachowskis commissioned the score prior to shooting, so he wrote “a six-movement, symphony-like piece” that was recorded, played on the set, and then used in most of the final film score.

Giacchino wrote from “a huge book of concept art for the film, and a stack of index cards that contained character descriptions, various locations, and some situations that the characters might find themselves in. I am so curious to see the ballet and to once again travel to those worlds in a new way,” he said.

The Pacific Northwest Ballet, founded in 1972, is one of the largest and most highly regarded ballet companies in the U.S. Performances are scheduled for Nov. 2, 3 and 8-11 at McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer Street, Seattle.

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