Modern dance at light speed



We’re very sorry to announce that due to venue closures as part of the efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19, the scheduled performances of Volt in Sydney and Melbourne have been cancelled.

If you hold a ticket for these performances, you will have received an email offering you a choice between donating your ticket, receiving a credit, or receiving a refund. See more information about the closures and ticket options here.

This is a situation of unprecedented difficulty for us at The Australian Ballet, as it is for all Australians. We’d like to thank the many generous patrons who have already offered to support the company through this challenging time by choosing to donate their ticket. We look forward to the time when the lights go on, the curtain goes up and we dance for you again.


Ballet meets The White Stripes. Pointes meet polka dots. Britain’s leading light meets Australia’s rising star in an electrifying program of innovative dance.

For more than a decade, Wayne McGregor has been performing fierce and thrilling experiments on ballet, taking it next-level with punk pecks and twitches, whip-lash spines, warp-speed leaps and hyper-stretched lines. As well as being The Royal Ballet’s resident choreographer, this wide-ranging creative has made movement for Radiohead and the Chemical Brothers, the Harry Potter movies and fashion designer Gareth Pugh. In his one-act works Chroma and Dyad 1929, McGregor strips back ballet and builds it anew.

Chroma, performed in architect John Pawson’s stark white box and driven by composer Joby Talbot’s take on songs by alt-rockers The White Stripes, places the dancers at the centre of a kinetic whirlwind. In Dyad 1929 the dancers, sharply lit and set in a crisp background of black dots on white, seem to race Steve Reich’s full-tilt, Pulitzer-Prize-winning score Double Sextet to the finish line.

Alice Topp, resident choreographer of The Australian Ballet, first worked with McGregor on the creation of Dyad 1929, and later performed in his Chroma and Infra. These experiences, she says, unlocked her confidence and creativity. “I’d spent years as one of 24 swans, trying to blend into a perfect line. Wayne freed me to find and believe in my own artistic voice – the greatest gift I’ve ever received.” Topp, who recently won acclaim for her Helpmann Award-winning work Aurum at home and in New York, will continue her love affair with the music of Ludovico Einaudi and will team with long-time collaborator Jon Buswell to design the lighting and staging for Logos, a work about armouring ourselves against modern demons: “our predators, pressures, climate and, at times, ourselves.”

McGregor. Topp. Modern dance that turns it on.

A little taste of the dramatic settings and poses of McGregor and Topp's works.

Artists of The Australian Ballet in Chroma, Dyad 1929 and Aurum. Photography Jess Bialek, Jim McFarlane and Lynette Wills


CHROMA (2006)
Choreography Wayne McGregor
Music Joby Talbot
'Cloudpark', 'A Yellow Disc Rising From the Sea', 'Transit of Venus' and 'Hovercraft'
Published by Chester Music Limited
By kind permission of the Music Sales Group
Jack White III
'Aluminum', 'The Hardest Button to Button' and 'Blue Orchid' 
Published by Peppermint Stripe Music/EMI Music Publishing Ltd
New arrangement by Joby Talbot orchestrated by Christopher Austin
By kind permission of the Music Sales Group
Set design John Pawson
Costume design Moritz Junge
Lighting design Lucy Carter
Stager Neil Fleming Brown
Coached by Principal Restager Antoine Vereecken

Chroma was commissioned by The Royal Ballet and had its premiere at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, on 17 November 2006

LOGOS (2020)
Choreography and costume design Alice Topp
Music Ludovico Einaudi
'Whirling Winds', 'Ultimi Fuochi', 'Logos' and 'Elegy for the Arctic'
Set and lighting design Jon Buswell

Logos is a co-commission by Studio Wayne McGregor, The Australian Ballet and Dance@The Grange. It is generously supported by the Robert Southey Fund for Australian Choreography.

'Whirling Winds', 'Logos' and 'Elegy for the Arctic' are published by Chester Music and used by kind permission of the Music Sales Group

DYAD 1929 (2009)
Choreography Wayne McGregor
Music Steve Reich Double Sextet
Stage concept Wayne McGregor and Lucy Carter
Costume design Moritz Junge
Lighting design Lucy Carter
Principal Restager Antoine Vereecken

Dyad 1929 was originally commissioned by The Australian Ballet and had its premiere at Arts Centre Melbourne on 21 August 2009

These performances of Double Sextet by Steve Reich are given by permission of Hal Leonard Australia Pty Ltd, exclusive agents for Boosey and Hawkes Music Publishers Ltd of London

With Orchestra Victoria and Opera Australia Orchestra


  • Commissioning Partner
  • Production Partner