Ballet International Gala Opening Night
Distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I begin by acknowledging the traditional custodians of the lands on which we gather, the Turrbul and Jagera peoples, and extend my respectful greetings to Elders, past, present and emerging.
It is a great honour, as the representative in Queensland of our Head of State, Her Majesty The Queen, to join you all for the opening night of the Ballet International Gala.
Now today is a day of national importance, so I am mindful of not appearing too parochial!
But it fills me with immense pride that we gather in Brisbane to experience the world premiere of a Gala exclusively shown in Queensland.
In fulfilling my duties as Governor, I usually withhold my personal opinions. But tonight, I am very happy to make an exception.
Graeme and I both agree the Ballet International Gala is one of the most inspiring initiatives to come out of Queensland of recent times!
Organising an event of this calibre, bringing to Australia some of the brightest stars from the world’s signature ballet companies to collaborate with our own artists, is a logistically complex task during the best of times – let alone during a global pandemic.
Joel, Beck and Khalid, I speak for all Queenslanders in saying how greatly we treasure your vision, dedication and persistence.
Of course, it takes a small army to bring a concept of this scale to life, and I also thank the Gala’s many financial and administrative supporters.
I further thank the international dancers for finding time in their gruelling schedules to travel to Australia.
Their presence is a great honour for our State, and I know our Australian artists cherish the opportunity to perform with them before appreciative audiences in Brisbane and on the Sunshine Coast.
Finally, I thank you all, the audience, for being here tonight.
It is just so important that we come out and support events like this right now – your presence is a powerful reminder we must not let the virus control all aspects of our lives.
Ladies and gentlemen, Graeme and I are greatly enthused by the prospect of tonight’s thrilling repertoire, as we prepare to embark on a mesmerising global journey through some of the greatest pas de duex, culminating, I am told, in a special world exclusive finale!
We wish you all a most enjoyable evening, and an optimistic and rewarding 2022. Thank you.