Experience the glitz, glamour, and romance of Strictly Gershwin

WORDS: Meryn Cooper PHOTOGRAPHY Supplied

Due to popular demand, Derek Deane’s Strictly Gershwin will return to the Lyric Theatre after its outstanding sell-out success in 2016.

Celebrating the glitz and glamour of the 1920s and ‘30s this production is a stunning tribute to the Gershwin brothers’ memorable music and the sparkling age of Hollywood musicals.

Queensland Ballet Artistic Director Li Cunxin AO said he can’t wait to share this ballet with Brisbane audiences once again.

“From the modern era to the glamour of the golden age, Strictly Gershwin is a melting pot of classical ballet, singing, tap and ballroom dancing, and the best of the Gershwin’s sensational music,” Mr Li said.

“It’s one of the most magnificent productions of all time. Queensland Ballet performed it in 2016 to audiences and critical acclaim, and, due to popular demand, we can’t wait to present it again.”

Summoning the silver screen magic of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Queensland Ballet will take audiences on a dazzling journey through ballet, jazz, tap, and ballroom dance genres, to the big band era soundtrack of the thirties. It’s a true celebration of the Gershwins, with Derek Deane’s choreography a sensational match to their larger-than-life Broadway creations and seductive Hollywood tunes.

Queensland Ballet Director of Foundation and Endowment and former Principal Artist of Queensland Ballet Rachael Walsh said she is looking forward to returning to the role after seven years.

“The show is pure joy – for me an unforgettable experience is shared between the performers and the audience as we journey through Gershwin’s enticing tunes, different dance styles and exuberant choreography. It’s old school Hollywood glamour and it’s exciting!” Ms Walsh said.

“Am I crazy returning to the stage? Well let’s hope I can be as timeless as the music,” she laughs.

“Dancing alongside of Queensland Ballet’s fabulous artists and of course guest tap dancers Bill and Kris is an absolute gift. Dance is a gift,” she said.

Queensland Ballet presents Derek Deane’s Strictly Gershwin from 28 September – 7 October at the Lyric Theatre, QPAC. For more information, click here.

Derek Deane’s Strictly Gershwin is generously enabled by the Ken Talbot Foundation, with Presenting Partner – Margot McKinney.



Derek Deane – Choreographer and Director

George Gershwin – Words and Music

Ira Gershwin – Words and Music

Ivan Gil-Ortega – Choreographer Assistant

Cameron Goerg – Revival Lighting Designer

Roberta Guidi di Bagno – Costume Designer

Howard Harrison – Lighting Designer

Ben Hughes – Revival Lighting Designer

Don Sebesky – Orchestrator

Bill Simpson – Tap Choreographer and Artist

Gareth Valentine – Music Adaption Supervisor

Queensland Symphony Orchestra – Music performance


Music in the Show

Someone to Watch Over Me
Fascinatin’ Rhythm
Shall We Dance?
The Man I Love
‘S Wonderful
Embraceable You
An American in Paris


Rhapsody in Blue
Gershwin Interlude
Lady Be Good
But Not For Me
It Ain’t Necessarily So
Strike Up the Band
Who Cares?
A Foggy Day
I Got Rhythm
Fascinatin’ Rhythm Finale


Costumes and props are co-owned by Queensland Ballet and Tulsa Ballet.

The Worldwide Copyrights in the Music of George and Ira Gershwin for this Presentation are Licensed by the Gershwin® Family.

Queensland Ballet website