ABT premieres ‘Whipped Cream’ in California

Betsy McBride as Swirl GirlSegerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California will soon present the world premiere of American Ballet Theatre’s new production of Whipped Cream, choreographed by ABT Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky, with sets and costumes by pop-surrealist Mark Ryden. There will be seven performances March 15–19 in Segerstrom Hall.


Whipped Cream is based on Schlagobers, a two-act ballet with libretto and score by Richard Strauss that was first performed at the Vienna State Opera in 1924. The Pacific Symphony will perform the score live.


A dollop of delightful whimsy, this thoroughly inventive full-length premiere tells the story of a young boy who overindulges at a Viennese pastry shop and falls into a delirium. To help him escape from his attending physician, the boy dreams of his triumphant rescue by Princess Praline and her court, replete with Princess Tea Flower, Prince Coffee as well as marching Marzipan, concluding in a festive celebration! As light as meringue, Strauss’ score is the perfect inspiration for this all-new production destined to delight ballet fans of all ages.


“I am so very intrigued by this unique story and the approach Alexei and Mark are taking,” said ABT Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie. “The combination of fantasy and surrealism will prove something dreamlike from both of them.”


The opening night principal cast includes: Daniil Simkin (The Boy); Stella Abrera (Princess Tea Flower); David Hallberg (Prince Coffee) and Sarah Lane (Princess Praline).


Ratmansky stated, “I am particularly excited for audiences to experience Strauss’ music in this ballet, Whipped Cream. There is real craziness in this score, which inspired me to approach the pop surrealist Mark Ryden. He is creating an incredible world that is a little scary, full of weird details and super precise. His technique is astounding, and I am matching him with my own tiny choreographic details.”


Tickets to ABT’s Whipped Cream start at $29 and are now available online at www.SCFTA.org. Note that a free Preview Talk will be given one hour prior to each performance.


Photo: Betsy McBride as Swirl Girl. Photo by Ruven Afanador.