Photo by Gareth Jones

Pepper land dress rehearsal and press night.
Images by Gareth Jones

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is proud to present the renowned Mark Morris Dance Group performing the Center Premiere of Pepperland June 14 & 15, 2019 in Segerstrom Hall. Mark Morris, hailed as one of “the most successful and influential choreographers alive,” (The New York Times) returns to Orange County with a groundbreaking dance tribute to the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Originally created for the City of Liverpool’s Sgt. Pepper at 50 Festival in May 2017, this colorful piece resounds with the ingenuity, musicality, wit and humanity for which the company is known. Pepperland seems to revel in the eccentric charm and joyful optimism of the iconic Beatles album.
The evening-length work features an original score by composer Ethan Iverson, interspersing arrangements of “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” with six original Pepper-inspired pieces composed specifically to showcase Mark Morris’ profound understanding of classical forms: Allegro, Scherzo, Adagio, and the blues. An unprecedented chamber music ensemble of voice, theremin, soprano sax, trombone, two keyboards, and percussion teases out and elaborates on Sgt. Pepper’s non-rock and roll influences.
Single tickets for the Pepperland start at $29 and are available now online at, at the Box Office at 600 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa or by calling (714) 556-2787. For inquiries about group ticket discounts for 10 or more, call the Group Services office at (714) 755-0236.
This work is a Mark Morris Dance Group production in association with Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa, California; American Dance Festival, Durham, North Carolina; BAM, Brooklyn, New York; Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity with the Sony Centre, Toronto, Canada; Cal Performances, UC Berkeley, California; The City of Liverpool, England, U.K.; Dance Consortium UK; Hopkins Center for the Arts, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire; International Festival of Arts & Ideas, New Haven, Connecticut; The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, D.C.; Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; La Jolla Music Society, La Jolla, California; Meyer Sound, Berkeley, California; Seattle Theatre Group, Seattle, Washington; UCSB Arts & Lectures, Santa Barbara, California; and White Bird, Portland, Oregon.
Music commissioned by the Charles and Joan Gross Family Foundation. Original music by The Beatles. All Rights Reserved. Used by permission from Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts’ International Dance Series is made possible by the Audrey Steele Burnand Endowed Fund for International Dance, the Segerstrom Foundation Endowment for Great Performances and the Orange County Community Foundation. Segerstrom Center for the Arts thanks its corporate partners including Kia Motors America, Official Automotive Partner; and United Airlines, Official Airline. Classical KUSC and Coast Magazine are Media Partners of the International Dance Series.
Mark Morris Dance Group Dancers
Artists and program are subject to change.
Mica Bernas
Brian Lawson
About the Artists
Mark Morris Dance Group
Founded in New York in 1980, the internationally renowned Mark Morris Dance Group (MMDG) has been
called “the preeminent modern dance organization of our time” (Yo-Yo Ma). After spending three years
residing in Brussels’ Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie as Belgium’s national dance company, MMDG returned to the United States in 1991. MMDG has received “highest praise for their technical aplomb, their musicality, and their sheer human authenticity” (Bloomberg News). The Dance Group is distinguished as the only modern dance company with a commitment to live music at every performance, founding the MMDG Music Ensemble in 1996. In addition to the ensemble, MMDG regularly collaborates with eminent musicians across many genres. Community engagement is also a vital component of the Dance Group. Through the organization’s Access/MMDG programming, MMDG integrates opportunities for dance, music, talks, and education at its Brooklyn home, the Mark Morris Dance Center, as well as on tour around the world.
MMDG Music Ensemble
Pepperland‘s unique chamber music ensemble consists of New York City’s finest musicians specializing in voice (Clinton Curtis), theremin (Rob Schwimmer), soprano sax (Sam Newsome), trombone (Jacob Garchik), organ/harpsichord (Colin Fowler), piano (Ethan Iverson) and percussion (Vinnie Sperrazza).
Mark Morris, Choreographer
Mark Morris has been hailed as the “the most successful and influential choreographer alive, and indisputably the most musical.” (The New York Times). In addition to creating over 150 works for the Mark Morris Dance Group, he conducts orchestras, directs opera, and choreographs for ballet companies worldwide. Morris’ work is acclaimed for its ingenuity, musicality, wit, and humanity. Named a Fellow of the MacArthur Foundation in 1991, he has received eleven honorary doctorates to date, and a multitude of awards, including the Samuel H. Scripps/American Dance Festival Award for Lifetime Achievement, the Leonard Bernstein Lifetime Achievement Award for the Elevation of Music in Society, the Benjamin Franklin Laureate Prize for Creativity, the Cal Performances Award of Distinction in the Performing Arts,
the Orchestra of St. Luke’s Gift of Music Award, and the 2016 Doris Duke Artist Award. In 2015, Morris was inducted to the National Museum of Dance in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Ethan Iverson, Composer
Ethan Iverson, former MMDG music director, is one-third of The Bad Plus (TBP), a game-changing collective with Reid Anderson and David King. The New York Times called TBP “…Better than anyone at melding the sensibilities of post-60’s jazz and indie rock.” TBP has performed in venues as diverse as the Village Vanguard, Carnegie Hall, and Bonnaroo; collaborated with Joshua Redman, Bill Frisell, and the Mark Morris Dance Group; and created a faithful arrangement of Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” and a radical reinvention of Ornette Coleman’s Science Fiction. In addition to TBP, Iverson participates in the critically acclaimed Billy Hart quartet with Mark Turner and Ben Street and occasionally performs with an elder statesman like Albert “Tootie” Heath or Ron Carter. For a decade Iverson’s blog Do the Math has been a repository of musician-to-musician interviews and analysis, which is surely one reason Time Out New York selected Iverson as one of 25 essential New York jazz icons: “Perhaps NYC’s most thoughtful and passionate student of jazz tradition—the most admirable sort of artist-scholar.” In 2017 Iverson co-curated a major centennial celebration of Thelonious Monk at Duke University and in 2018 premiered an original piano concerto with the American Composers Orchestra.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts is an acclaimed arts institution as well as a beautiful multi-disciplinary cultural campus. It is committed to supporting artistic excellence, offering unsurpassed experiences and to engaging the entire community in new and exciting ways through the unique power of live performance and a diverse array of inspiring arts-based education and community engagement programs.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts –
Segerstrom Hall
600 Town Center Drive, Costa
Mesa, CA
Choreographed by Mark Morris
Music by The Beatles with original compositions by Ethan Iverson
Costumes by Elizabeth Kurtzman
June 14 & 15, 2019
Friday, June 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, June 15 at 2:00 and 7:30 p.m.
Tickets – Start at $29
In person – The Box Office
600 Town Center Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily
Online –
Phone – (714) 556-2787
Open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily
Group Sales – (714) 755-0236
Open 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday-Friday
Information provided is accurate at the time of printing but is subject to change. Segerstrom Center for the Arts is a public, non-profit organization. “Segerstrom Center for the Arts” is a registered trademark.