The Grand Ballroom at Sofitel Melbourne On Collins was a sea of red and gold delighting guests as they arrived from the Regent Theatre for a gala event celebrating the Melbourne premiere of the much anticipated movie, Mao’s Last Dancer.
The Sofitel Melbourne on Collins transformed their Grand
Ballroom for the Melbourne film premiere
Aiding both the Australian Ballet and the Bionic Ear Institute, the gala event was attended by over 500 guests including the book’s author, Li Cunxin and his family, and stars of the film Chi Cao, who plays Li as an adult, Ghengwu Guo, a member of the Australian Ballet who plays Li as a teenager and Camilla Vergotis, who plays Mary, Li’s wife and dance partner in the movie.
One of the Australian Ballet’s most celebrated principal dancers, Steven Heathcote was also a guest and the MC on the night, and well known TV journalist and long time friend, Jeff McMullen interviewed Li about his autobiography and its movie adaptation, to the obvious delight of guests.
Guests entering the ballroom felt that they had stepped on to the movie set of ‘Mao’s Last Dancer’ with magnificent lighting and special effects including a large panoramic screen depicting amazing photographs of Li dancing. Sofitel’s chefs tempted guests to a sumptuous selection of Asian food favourites from cooking stations which offered peking duck, tempura battered prawns with schezwan pepper dipping sauce, five spiced pork, steamed dim sums, spring rolls, and black sesame prawn toasts with delicious desserts of lychee sorbet balls, Chinese custard tarts and chocolate peanut brittle.
The Sofitel Melbourne On Collins’ is no stranger to being the ‘first night party’ venue. Recent first nighters at the hotel have included parties for the musicals WICKED, Jersey Boys and Chicago, all receiving rave reviews.