Presented by Dublin Dance Festival and the Abbey Theatre

Navy Blue

23 - 24 May 2023

Choreographed by Oona Doherty

Booking Information

Dates: 23 – 24 May
On the Abbey stage  

Times: 7.30pm

Tickets: €13 – €40 (concession rates available)

Running time: 50 mins (No interval)


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

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.

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.


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.


“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

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Abbey Theatre
26/27 Lower Abbey Street
Dublin 1
D01 K0F1