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Strictly Ballroom set for West Yorkshire Playhouse

The Playhouse confirms premier UK staging of the hit dance musical.

West Yorkshire Playhouse

Strictly Ballroom The Musical is to make its UK premiere at the West Yorkshire Playhouse in the next Winter season 2016-17.

Drew McOnie will direct and choreograph the production, which is based on the original Australian musical created by Baz Luhrmann and Catherine Martin. Terry Johnson joins the creative team to adapt the original book.

Baz Luhrmann commented: “One of the great joys for us was to take a story that began as a play when I was at drama school and return to our homeland in Australia to birth the musical stage version with all our original collaborators. Now that it’s been born, Strictly Ballroom must go on. It’s wonderful that one of the new bright-lights of the English theatre, who himself was fan of the film at a young age, is taking the show to realize it in a new way, for new audiences, and oversee its continued growth.”

James Brining, Artistic Director of West Yorkshire Playhouse, adds: “I’m thrilled that we will be working with a world class creative team here in Leeds and creating the first UK staging of this musical for our 2016 Christmas show.”

Strictly Ballroom The Musical is co-produced by West Yorkshire Playhouse and Global Creatures and follows the success of James Brining’s co-production of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, currently on a major year-long tour of the UK and Ireland.

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, Sydney, Australia, in 1984. The film was discovered at the Cannes Film Festival, where it was the winner of the Prix de Jeunnesse and runner up for the Palme D’Or. When released in Australia, Strictly Ballroomswept the field at the 1992 Australian Film Institute (AFI) Awards, gaining 13 nominations and winning in eight major categories. It also won three awards at the 1993 BAFTA awards, received a 1994 Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture, and eventually went on to become one of the most successful Australian films of all time, earning more than $80 million at the box office.

Strictly Ballroom The Musical is at West Yorkshire Playhouse from 30th November 16 – 21st January 2017. Tickets cost £45-£13.50 and will be available online at or via the Box Office on 0113 213 7700.


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