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Wayne McGregor directs Max Richter's unique new chamber opera, which takes its inspiration from neuroscientist David Eagleman's bestselling book of short stories about the possibilities of the afterlife.

Most recent performance

There are currently no scheduled performances of Sum. It was last on stage 23 May—2 June 2012.


Sum: Forty Tales From the Afterlives is a thought-provoking meditation on what happens to us after we die. The book’s ideas are brought out through music, film and performance in a series of intriguing scenarios.


The contemporary experimental composer Max Richter and The Royal Ballet's Resident Choreographer Wayne McGregor create a fascinating new chamber opera for the Linbury Studio Theatre. The project takes its inspiration from American neuroscientist David Eagleman's cult book of short stories Sum: Forty Tales from the Afterlives, a collection of witty, clever and thought-provoking ideas on what an 'afterlife' could be. The result is an intriguing vision from McGregor, Richter and renowned artist Lorna Heavey of a possible journey after death, populated by computers, suburban anterooms and mind-stretching scenarios. Using music, film and performance, Sum explores an interactive audience experience and takes opera to a whole new level of existence.

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