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This event was part of our 2023 Edition

Navy Blue Oona Doherty

Presented by Dublin Dance Festival and the Abbey Theatre
Big Pulse Dance Alliance Co-Production / DDF Commission / Irish Premiere

Northern Ireland

A brutal and beautiful search for meaning, an attempt for freedom and for a new future

Navy Blue
© Sinje Hasheider
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Tue 23—Wed 24 May 2023

Oona Doherty, one of Europe’s major choreographic talents, returns to Dublin Dance Festival and the Abbey stage with her most ambitious work to date. Featuring music from Sergeï Rachmaninoff and Jamie xx, this compelling new work invites us to consider where we have been and where we are heading, as it appeals for urgent societal change.

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€13 – €40 (concession rates available)


Abbey Theatre, on the Abbey stage

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How long?

50 mins (No interval) 

Contains strong language

Please note that there will be a post-show talk after the performance on the 24th May


Tue 23 May

Wed 24 May

From the show

Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Doherty Sinje Hasheider
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Doherty Sinje Hasheider
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Doherty Sinje Hasheider
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Doherty Sinje Hasheider
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Dajana Lothert
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Dajana Lothert
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Dajana Lothert
Navy Blue- Oona Doherty © Dajana Lothert


★★★★ “Art needs passionate artists and there is no doubt that she is one”

The Observer

“Doherty’s honesty and wit is refreshing but in the end it’s these fleeting, arresting moments, like the body that streaks through a shaft of light on the inky stage, that are the point of gathering here in the darkness together.”

The Guardian

“Navy Blue poses universal questions about society, personal accountability, and art. Artistically brave, its honesty in exposing uncertainty only strengthens its overall message of the primacy of community.”

The Irish Times

“Yet another thoroughly gripping, disturbing show. The award-winning choreographer Oona Doherty creates a multidimensional piece, which takes the audience on a journey through perspectives, moods, time, music, and poetry

West End Evenings

Navy Blue is a dark, unsettling choreography created by Doherty in collaboration with a cast of twelve exceptional dancers. While their movements are graceful and simultaneous, each dancer maintains their own distinct individuality – the unison of classical ballet infused with a sense of uneasiness and existential dread.

Set to Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, a work that reflects his own depression and its overcoming, Navy Blue explores crisis, redemption, and re-birth. Referencing the power structures that contain us, it is a brutal and beautiful search for meaning and purpose. A big piece that asks big questions. An attempt for freedom and for a new future.


  • Choreography Oona Doherty, in collaboration with the Dancers.
  • Dancers Amancio Gonzalez Miñon, Andréa Moufounda, Arno Brys, Kinda Gozo, Hilde Ingeborg Sandvold, Joseph Simon, Mathilde Roussin, Kevin Coquelard, Sati Veyrunes, Thibaut Eiferman, Tomer Pistiner, Zoé Lecorgne and Magdalena Öttl.
  • Music Jamie xx and Sergueï Rachmaninov
  • Music collaborator Jamie xx © by Universal Music Publishing Ltd.
  • With additional music Sergueï Rachmaninov
  • Video conception Nadir Bouassria
  • Lighting Design and technical Director John Gunning
  • Stage Manager Lisa Marie Barry
  • Costume conception Oona Doherty and Lisa Marie Barry
  • Production Gabrielle Veyssiere/ OD Works.

Navy Blue is a creation of Oona Doherty, produced by OD Works, coproduced by Kampnagel International Summer Festival (DE), Sadler’s Wells (UK), Théâtre National de Chaillot (FR), La Biennale di Venezia (IT), Maison de la Danse (FR), The Shed (USA), Belfast International Arts Festival (UK) and Big Pulse Dance Alliance (coproduced by Dance Umbrella (UK), Dublin Dance Festival (IR), Torinodanza Festival (IT) and Julidans (NL) ) and presented by Tanz im August/HAU Hebbel am Ufer (DE), Zodiak - Side Step Festival (FI), ONE Dance Week (BG), International Dance Festival TANEC PRAHA (CZ), New BalticDance (LT), CODA Oslo International Dance Festival (NW), funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation, co-funded by the Creative Europe program of the European Union, Supported by Kulturstiftug des Bundes and the support of the Direction régionale des affaires culturelles d’Ile-de-France – Ministère de la culture.

  • Abbey-Theatre
  • Big Pulse Dance Alliance

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