When New York City Ballet’s ballet master in chief Peter Martins told his 14-year old daughter he was choreographing a new ballet with a scenario and orchestral score by Sir Paul McCartney, the teenager was adamant: “Daddy, Stella McCartney has to do the costumes.” Simultaneously, the fashion designer was making the same suggestion to her ex-Beatle dad, so both McCartneys will be making their dance theater debuts when Ocean’s Kingdom—a 50-minute-long, four-act work—receives its world premiere on September 22 at New York City Ballet (through Sept. 29).

In the tradition of classics like Swan Lake, Sir Paul’s ballet is a romantic fantasy: the daughter of the Ocean King falls in love with the brother of the Earth King, and trouble ensues. The opening night cast includes two of the company's most lambent dancers, Sara Mearns and Robert Fairchild, in the principal roles, while brilliant video and projections designer S. Katy Tucker will use her technical sorcery to evoke their respective realms.

Image courtesy of New York City Ballet