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Luhrmann Developing Strictly Ballroom Musical

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Baz Luhrmann has revealed plans to develop a stage musical version of his hit 1992 film Strictly Ballroom.

Luhrmann will direct the production himself, and has signed a multi-million dollar agreement with Sydney-based Global Creatures production company. Work on the project will start in earnest from December, when he will travel to Sydney for workshops.

The film was Luhrmann’s first, and proved a hit with critics and audiences with its feel-good storyline, 'cha cha' dance routines and soundtrack of popular songs including its signature tune “Love Is In the Air”.

The director, whose other credits include Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge, said in a statement: "After years of talk about bringing Strictly Ballroom to the musical stage, I'm energized by the partnership we have made with Global Creatures, an Australian company that has made a giant impression on the world's stages over the last three years."

"Strictly Ballroom has always been very personal to me, the genesis drawn from my childhood experience in the world of ballroom dancing. The creative and life ideals of the story, that being that a life lived in fear is a life half lived; and creativity triumphing over creative oppression, the belief there's always more than just one way to cha cha cha, are ideals I live and create by to this day."

Collaborators are likely to include Craig Pearce and John O'Connell, who co-wrote and choreographed the film respectively, and Tony Award-winning designer Catherine Martin, who worked with Luhrmann on a Broadway version of La boheme in 2002.

Strictly Ballroom, which could take up to two years to bring to the stage, will be produced for Global Creatures by Carmen Pavlovic and Rob Brookman.


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