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Kevin Clifton to star in the 2020/21 UK and Ireland tour of Strictly Ballroom The Musical

Kevin Clifton

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FORMER Strictly Come Dancing champion Kevin Clifton is to star in the 2020/2021 UK and Ireland tour of Baz Luhrmann’s Strictly Ballroom The Musical, playing the lead role of Scott Hastings.

Last week, after seven years on Strictly Come Dancing, Clifton announced his departure from the series and now makes a full-time move into the world of musical theatre.

Kevin Clifton said: “I’m beyond excited to be finally fulfilling a lifelong ambition to play Scott Hastings in Strictly Ballroom The Musical. When I was 10 years old I first watched the movie that would become my favourite film of all time. This is my dream role. Plus I get to work with Craig Revel Horwood again! I really can’t wait to don the golden jacket and waltz all over the UK from September this year in what’s set to be an incredible show!”

The musical is based on the award-winning film Strictly Ballroom, which inspired the world to dance. Directed by Craig Revel Horwood, it’s described as an all-singing, all-dancing and all-glittering show.

Kicking off in Nottingham on September 26, the musical will then waltz around the UK and Ireland before culminating in Reading in June 2021. Tickets are on sale now from strictlyballroomtour.co.uk/.

Kevin Clifton joined Strictly Come Dancing in 2013, performing in the final five times and was crowned Strictly Champion in 2018. He’s a world-class professional dancer, former Youth World Number One and four-time British Latin Champion and has won international open titles all over the world.

After making his West End musical theatre debut in 2010 in Dirty Dancing, he starred as Robbie Hart in The Wedding Singer (Wembley Troubadour Park Theatre) and as Stacie Jaxx in the West End production of Rock of Ages.

Strictly Ballroom The Musical tells the beguiling story of Scott Hastings, a talented, arrogant and rebellious young ballroom dancer. When Scott’s radical dance moves see him fall out of favour with the Australian Federation, he finds himself dancing with Fran, a beginner with no moves at all. Inspired by one another, this unlikely pair gather the courage to defy both convention and their families – and discover that, to be winners, the steps don’t need to be strictly ballroom.

Featuring a book by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce, and bringing together a cast of over 20 world class performers, Strictly Ballroom brings to life iconic songs, including Love is in the Air, Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps and Time After Time with dynamic and joyous verve.

This tour will also feature some new songs by internationally acclaimed artists including Sia, David Foster and Eddie Perfect. The show’s scintillating singing, dazzling dancing and eye-popping costumes will combine together to bring audiences a story of heart, comedy and drama, and promises to be an unforgettable night under the glitter ball.

This uplifting and courageous musical originated as a stage play that Baz Luhrmann devised with a group of classmates at Sydney’s National Institute of Dramatic Art in 1984. Eight years later he made his screen directorial debut with Strictly Ballroom, the first instalment in Luhrmann’s acclaimed Red Curtain Trilogy.

The film enjoyed staggering success, winning three awards at the 1993 BAFTAs and a 1994 Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture. It went on to become one of the most successful Australian films of all time, earning more than $80 million at the box office. In April 2014, Strictly Ballroom The Musical had its world premiere at the Sydney Lyric Theatre.

The tour opens in Nottingham before continuing to Wolverhampton, Hull, Milton Keynes, Sunderland, Bristol, Bromley, Edinburgh, York, Salford, Guildford, Northampton, Southend, Norwich, Llandudno, Aylesbury, Darlington, Newcastle, New Wimbledon Theatre (February 22 -27, 2021), Bournemouth, Dublin, Derry, Aberdeen, Peterborough, Cardiff, Sheffield, Glasgow, Liverpool, Canterbury, Birmingham, Plymouth, Blackpool, Bradford, Southampton, Ipswich and Reading, with more dates to be announced soon.