Strictly Ballroom the Musical is the inspiring story of a championship ballroom dancer who defies all the rules to follow his heart. This uplifting and courageous tale originated as a stage play that Baz Luhrmann devised with a group of students at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) back in 1984.
“From a small student play to my first motion picture and now a full-blown theatrical stage musical, Strictly Ballroom has been an almost thirty year journey for me,” says director, Baz Luhrmann.
“I have often marvelled at how this story, born so long ago, has been in my life for so many years and has managed to touch, move, entertain and uplift so many different people from so many different backgrounds.”
“I think the simple truth is that, despite all the sequins, outrageous hairdos and classic Hollywood musical plotting, the simple message that there isn’t only one way to cha cha cha, and that within us all we have the true potential to dance through life with our own steps is something that appeals to all of us.”
“The message that life doesn’t have to be strictly ballroom is something I hope to have our audiences carry with them as they dance down the aisles.”
Following its premiere in Sydney in April, this new production is staged by the original creative team behind the classic 1992 film, including director and co-writer Baz Luhrmann, set and costume designer Catherine Martin, choreographer John “Cha Cha” O’Connell and co-writer Craig Pearce.
Playing the pivotal roles of ‘Scott Hastings’ and ‘Fran’ is Thomas Lacey and Phoebe Panaretos who lead an outstanding Australian cast of 43 including Bob Baines as Les Kendall, Drew Forsythe as Doug Hastings, Natalie Gamsu as Abuela, Robert Grubb as Barry Fife, Fernando Mira as Rico, Heather Mitchell as Shirley Hastings and Mark Owen-Taylor as JJ Silvers.
Strictly Ballroom the Musical features break-into-song numbers created from original classics from the film, Love is in the Air, Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps, and Time After Time as well as some wonderful new songs by artists such as Eddie Perfect and Sia.
Image: Strictly Ballroom the Musical – photo by Jeff Busby