4 May 2023

Following historic performances at Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center and the London Coliseum, The United Ukrainian Ballet will make its West Coast debut June 29 – July 2 at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, performing Alexei Ratmansky’sGiselle. This new interpretation of one of the greatest romantic ballets in the classical repertoire was created specifically for the company by Ratmansky, who himself is a Ukrainian citizen. Pacific Symphony, under conductor Gavriel Heine, will perform Adolphe Adam’s score.

These performances will be the first time Ratmansky’s Giselle is presented in collaboration with Liev Schreiber and his non-profit organization, BlueCheck Ukraine.  Thanks to the underwriting support of Elizabeth Segerstrom and the Henry T. and Elizabeth Segerstrom Foundation, proceeds from ticket sales will benefit BlueCheck which was created to vet, verify, and fund Ukrainian-led local and grassroots frontline organizations providing lifesaving humanitarian aid to victims of the Russian invasion.

“I am deeply grateful to Elizabeth Segerstrom for making these performances of the United Ukrainian Ballet’s Giselle possible,” said Alexei Ratmansky. “My wife Tatiana and I have felt greatly privileged to be able to work with this group of refugees based in The Hague. Creating Giselle, with its themes of love and betrayal, death and redemption, offered all of us some catharsis. The Company’s performances have taken them around the world, including to Amsterdam, London, Singapore, Sydney, Taipei, and Washington.  But their achievement is far greater than the performances on stage. Audiences have found a personal connection with the war that TV images cannot create.  After many years of featuring my work at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, I am excited to start a new chapter of collaboration with this historic production and cast.”

Liev Schreiber, co-founder of BlueCheck Ukraine, said, “We are incredibly grateful to Elizabeth Segerstrom for this partnership with the United Ukrainian Ballet. Thanks to her generosity, this performance of Giselle will generate funds to support organizations providing on-the-ground assistance in Ukraine where it is needed most.”

Elizabeth Segerstrom said “I am beyond words to express how thrilled I am to work with the genius Alexei Ratmansky on a project which pushes boundaries and makes a difference in the world. This unique collaboration is a chance to demonstrate the transformative power of the arts and its tremendous impact not only on these extraordinary dancers who have been displaced by war, but also on audiences to have a unique chance to participate directly in the cause.  I am also excited to collaborate with yet another genius of the stage, Liev Schreiber, whose charity BlueCheck Ukraine will support and directly impact those most affected by the war.”

The United Ukrainian Ballet is presented by Elizabeth Segerstrom and the Henry T. and Elizabeth Segerstrom Foundation in association with Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Ratmansky has a long relationship with Segerstrom Center, which has presented world premieres by the choreographer for more than a decade, including American Ballet Theatre’s Of Love and Rage (2022), Whipped Cream (2017), The Sleeping Beauty(2015), and Firebird (2012). Performances by the United Ukrainian Ballet are presented as part of the Henry T. Segerstrom Centennial.

Principal casting includes Christine Shevchenko and Alexis TutunniqueElizaveta Gogidze and Oleksii Kniazkov, and Iryna Zhalovska andDenys Nedak.

Tickets on sale beginning Thursday, May 4 at

About the United Ukrainian Ballet 
United by the tragedy of war and an ardent hope for the future, the United Ukrainian Ballet comprises 60 professional artists in exile from the national theaters of Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odessa, and others.  All members have their own stories of how they reached safety to join the company.

The United Ukrainian Ballet, under the artistic direction of Igone de Jongh, formed after Ukrainian dancers fled their homeland following the Russian invasion. The 60-member company is based in The Hague at the former Royal Conservatoire building, where they live and work through the generous support of local business and the government. The company aims to preserve Ukrainian ballet culture, give meaningful employment to dancers until the war is won, and to keep public support for Ukraine strong through a personal, emotional experience.

The company has toured this special production of Giselle to several Dutch cities, including the prestigious Royal Theatre Carré in Amsterdam in August 2022, before transferring to the London Coliseum Theatre in the West End for its highly acclaimed U.K. season in September 2022. These performances were graciously supported by the English National Opera which provided the orchestra; Birmingham Royal Ballet, which loaned the sets and costumes; and the Royal Opera House, which provided rehearsal space and other logistical support, all united in support of the company and the country this project represents.

About BlueCheck Ukraine 
Founded in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, BlueCheck Charitable Foundation (BlueCheck) is a group of experts committed to providing direct funding to local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and grassroots organizations on the ground. Backed by more than 30 years of combined experience in humanitarian aid and expertise across various industries, BlueCheck has created an end-to-end solution for identifying, vetting, verifying and fast-tracking funds to local NGOs. BlueCheck has funded more than 20 local Ukrainian and diaspora organizations delivering food and medicine, building shelters, distributing cash assistance, removing unexploded ordinance and landmines, evacuating people trapped in besieged areas, and caring for widows, elderly and children with special needs.  Powered by the due diligence services of Ropes and Gray and Integrity Risk International (IRI), its model takes the burden off local NGOs, so they can put their time and resources into what matters most – providing aid to saving lives and ease suffering of people caught up in wars and other man-made and natural disasters.

Henry T. Segerstrom Centennial 2023 
Henry T. Segerstrom (1923-2015) was a visionary in business, philanthropy, and the arts. Over the course of a long and highly productive life, he transformed the physical, cultural, and social landscape of his native Southern California, created an industry-leading retail business of unsurpassed quality and success, and forged relationships with artists and arts organizations that are his living legacy regionally, nationally, and internationally. Today, South Coast Plaza and Segerstrom Center for the Arts stand as an enduring testament to Henry Segerstrom’s bold vision, constant drive for excellence, and dedication to giving back. On the occasion of Henry Segerstrom’s centennial in 2023, his widow Elizabeth Segerstrom is honoring his memory as he would have wanted: by carrying forward his visionary work in business, philanthropy, and the arts.

About Segerstrom Center for the Arts 
Segerstrom Center for the Arts is an innovative, nonprofit arts organization committed to supporting artistic excellence, creating impactful educational programs, and dedicated to engaging a culturally connected, inclusive and vital Orange County community for all, through the power of live performance.

As the leading cultural arts hub, the Center presents a variety of programming with performances by international dance companies, Broadway national tours, jazz and cabaret musicians, chamber orchestras and ensembles, comedy, and speaker series. Through the Education and Community Engagement departments, the Center also delivers family-friendly programming and performances on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza; these events include outdoor movie screenings, concerts, dance classes, diverse festivals and more.

With six venues on a beautiful multi-disciplinary campus, Segerstrom Center for the Arts proudly serves as the artistic home to three of the region’s major performing arts organizations: Pacific Symphony, Philharmonic Society of Orange County and Pacific Chorale as well as two independently acclaimed organizations: Tony Award®-winning South Coast Repertory and the Orange County Museum of Art. Segerstrom Center is also home to the American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School and Studio D, Arts School for All Abilities.

About Pacific Symphony 
Led by Music Director Carl St. Clair for the last 32 years, Pacific Symphony is the resident orchestra of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall and Segerstrom Center for the Arts. In 2018, Pacific Symphony made its debut at Carnegie Hall as one of two orchestras invited to perform during a year-long celebration of composer Philip Glass’ 80th birthday, and the following month the orchestra successfully toured China.

Presenting more than 100 concerts and events a year and a rich array of education and community engagement programs, the Symphony reaches more than 300,000 residents—from school children to senior citizens.

Performance Schedule and Principal Casting 
The United Ukrainian Ballet
Choreography by Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot and Marius Petipa
New Choreographic version and additional choreography by Alexei Ratmansky
Music by Adolphe Adam
With Pacific Symphony Orchestra
Conducted by Gavriel Heine
Costume and Set Design by Hayden Griffin and Peter Farmer
Lighting Design by Andrew Ellis

Thursday, June 29 at 7:00 p.m. 
Giselle: Christine Shevchenko
Albrecht: Alexis Tutunnique

Friday, June 30 at 7:00 p.m.  
Giselle: Elizaveta Gogidze
Albrecht: Oleksii Kniazkov

Saturday, July 1 at 7:00 p.m. 
Giselle: Iryna Zhalovska
Albrecht: Denys Nedak

Sunday, July 2 at 1:00 p.m. 
Giselle: Elizaveta Gogidze
Albrecht: Oleksii Kniazkov

Tickets on sale beginning Thursday, May 4 at 

Casting is subject to change.