Debbie McGee is best known for being the glamorous assistant of magician Paul Daniels.
She was born in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, England on the 31st October 1958 to an English mother called Lillian Florence and an Irish father called Patrick. She has a sister called Donna and a brother called Robert.
From a young girl, Debbie enjoyed dressing up and appreciated music. Because of this her mother enrolled her at the "Gina Dyke School of Dancing" at the age of 7. When Debbie was 11, her dad realised that she had what it takes to dance professionally and decided to send her to a more established dancing school. He had been watching dance competitions for many years and decided that the "Phyl and Norma Arnold School" would be the best place for Debbie to study for her future career. However, because Debbie had already been to a different dance school for three years, she had a lot of catching up to do but she managed this without too much difficulty and was soon at the same level as her classmates. She won many competitions in various categories but excelled in classical ballet gaining awards such as a gold medal in the All England Dancing Competition and runner up in the English Ballet Championship.
At the age of 16, her school encouraged McGee to attend an audition for the Royal Ballet School at which she won a place at the Royal Ballet Upper School. whilst at this school, Debbie's father suggested that she also take classes to earn her Royal Ballet teachers' training course certificate. This was so that she would have a career if showbusiness ambitions didn't turn out quite how she wanted. Debbie attended this school for 3 years under the tuition of Valerie Adams.
Iran National Ballet
On gaining her diploma, McGee left England for Iran where she joined the Iranian National Ballet company which was based in Tehran at Rudaki Hall. At 19, she joined the Corps de Ballet and was promoted to soloist in just two months. In Iran she met many famous choreographers, and learnt from them until the ballet company was disbanded when there was a revolution to abolish the Shah. The revolution caused Debbie to leave Iran in a hurry, and she left without any possessions, for England.
Back in England, she auditioned for the Delfolt Organisations who are responsible for many summer shows which at the time included The Paul Daniels Magic Show which Debbie was chosen to perform in on stage in Great Yarmouth. This was the start of a promising duo which greatly furthered her career.
She then toured with Dougie Squires Second Generation dance group all over Europe performing with amongst others, Abba, Chris de Burgh and James Last, returning in the winter to star in pantomime in the UK.
The next summer McGee returned to appear once again with Paul Daniels to complete a summer season in Bournemouth. She then performed in "It's Magic" in the west end with Paul Daniels again. This magic show was the longest running magic show in London's West End. It ran for 14 months and amassed around a million pounds. Whilst in this show, John Fisher, the producer of "The Paul Daniels Show" saw her and asked her to appear in the programme. She was very pleased yet suprised with this offer as a previous producer had seen her and not offered her the job. She appeared on this show with her now husband Paul Daniels for the next 14 years as his glamorous assistant.
After marrying Paul Daniels, on the 2nd of April 1988, McGee's career progressed vastly. She is now the artistic director, choreographer and costume designer of her own ballet company called Ballet Imaginaire. This dance company which she set up with her husband aims to bring ballet to the masses. Its first production was a version of "Phantom of the Opera", but changed into Phantom of the Ballet, where the phantom haunts the Paris Opera House dreaming of how he could have been a famous ballet dancer if it wasn't for his disfigurement. Because of this, he writes threatening lettters, sabotages the ballet dancers' shoes, and abducts the prima ballerina. Daniels is technical advisor for special effects for the ballet company.
Debbie has many hobbies such as playing tennis, reading and buying clothes. She enjoys watching Cheers, The Golden Girls and Poirot, and wearing the colour pink. Amongst her list of dislikes she states that she hates smelly people.