David McAllister AC
Born in Perth, David McAllister joined The Australian Ballet in 1983 and was promoted to principal artist in 1989. During his time with the company, he danced many principal roles, including those in The Sleeping Beauty, Don Quixote, Coppélia, Manon, La Sylphide, John Cranko’s Onegin and Romeo and Juliet; in 1985 he won Bronze at the Fifth International Ballet Competition in Moscow. Throughout his career, David made numerous guest appearances worldwide, dancing with Bolshoi Ballet, the Kirov Ballet, the Georgian State Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada, Birmingham Royal Ballet, the Singapore Dance Theatre and, in 1992, as part of a Royal Gala performance in London in the presence of the Princess of Wales. In 2000, he completed a Graduate Diploma in Arts and Entertainment Management and in 2001, took his final bow as a dancer. In July of that year, David became the Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet. He was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia in the 2004 Australia Day Honours List and was invited to become a Vice President of the Royal Academy of Dance. In 2015, David premiered a new production of The Sleeping Beauty for The Australian Ballet. After two decades at the head of The Australian Ballet, at the end of 2020, David embarked on a new freelance career, co-authoring a Memoir with Amanda Dunn titled SOAR and creating a new production of Swan Lake for the Finnish National Ballet. In 2021 he became a Companion of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday’s Honours list, and received the Queen’s Coronation Medal from the Royal Academy of Dance and the J.C. Williamson Award from Live Performance Australia. In 2023 David is working with the Royal New Zealand Ballet as Acting Artistic Director and in 2024 will take up the role of Guest Artistic Director with the West Australian Ballet.
Hear from our Patron
David McAllister AC
“Ballet Theatre Queensland (BTQ) holds a unique position in the Australian dance landscape. Founded in 1937 as an association to support the development of young Queensland dancers, BTQ has established a long tradition of giving young dancers opportunities to work with industry professionals and perform in a professional performance environment. The dancers, choreographers, directors, and designers associated with the company since its inception read like a who’s-who of the performing arts in Queensland, and therefore the company’s history also reflects much of the Queensland dance history.
Ballet Theatre Queensland is not funded by the Government, therefore relies solely on the generosity and support of the State’s strong dance community. As Patron of Ballet Theatre Queensland, I urge you to support this unique organization, to guarantee that the talented young Queensland dancers will continue to have this opportunity to shine on stage.”