In 1997, Ballet for Life, a multimedia dance production created by late French choreographer Maurice Béjart using — and inspired by — Queen‘s music, premiered in Paris. Now, a home video titled Queen + Béjart: Ballet for Life, featuring footage of one of the ballet’s early performances and a documentary about the project, will be released on DVD, Blu-ray and digitally on September 6.
Ballet for Life was created to celebrate the lives and talents of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury and Bejart’s one-time principal dancer Jorge Donn, both of whom died of AIDS. The piece includes studio and live recordings of various Queen and solo Mercury tunes, as well as some Mozart pieces.
The documentary tells the story of the making of the ballet and of its success, and includes interviews with Queen guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor. The film also features footage of Queen bassist John Deacon‘s last performance with May and Taylor, which took place at the Ballet for Life premiere in Paris and also featured Elton John.
Some of the Queen songs featured in the ballet include “Radio Ga Ga,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “I Want to Break Free” and “The Show Must Go On.” The production included costumes designed by Gianni Versace shortly before his death, and archival footage of the band and Mercury.
Deluxe versions of the DVD and Blu-ray will come packaged with a 36-page hardback photo book.
The video is being released one day after the 2019 Freddie for a Day celebration, held annually on Mercury’s birthday. Proceeds raised by the release will benefit the Mercury Phoenix Trust charity, which supports AIDS-related causes.
Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.