Showing posts sorted by relevance for query our ladies of perpetual succour. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query our ladies of perpetual succour. Sort by date Show all posts

Friday, 2 June 2017

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour, Duke of York's | Review


Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour
Duke of York's Theatre
Reviewed on Wednesday May 31st 2017 by Olivia Mitchell
★★


When I saw Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour last summer at the National Theatre I instantly adored it. I started praying for a transfer and telling anyone who would listen to go and see it. I gave it the number six place in my top shows of 2016, five stars in my original review and was overjoyed when it scooped up the Olivier Award for Best New Comedy. I'm pleased to say that I loved it just as much the second time in it's new West End home: The Duke of York's and will be raving to everyone again to snap up a ticket!

Our Ladies is exactly what the West End needs right now, it's a fresh, exciting, fun and unique theatrical experience for all ages (...well most ages!) The show manages to be angelic, vivacious, electric and foul-mouthed at the same time and more than anything is a celebration of females.

The six superstars of the show play every single character in the narrative, from their choir master, hilariously named Condom to a series of suspiciously shady middle-aged men. The girls are backed by an all female band who accompany the fantastic musical interludes. The girls are outgoing and dramatic but behind all of that have their own fears for their futures and impending adulthood. 

The girls are absolutely wonderful, not only being hilarious in the comedic moments, but quiet and sentimental in more emotional scenes. They all have incredible voices too, moving seamlessly from Bartók to ELO with emotion, energy and poignancy. Isis Hainsworth is sincere in her portrayal of Orla who has just come back from a 'miracle' cancer recovery at Lourdes, Karen Fishwick is extremely versatile as Kay, switching from on the floor drunk to heartbreaking honesty perfectly. Caroline Deyga as Chell is hilarious and larger than life and Kirsty MacLaren as Manda is just lovely! For me, Frances Mayli McCann (Kylah) and Dawn Sievewright (Finnoula) are the standouts of the group, with absolutely stunning voices and completely faultless performances, but the entire cast are perfect and work together like real life school friends, creating an extremely realistic  albeit extremely shocking portrayal of growing up.

Directed by Vicky Featherstone and at an hour and fourty five minutes, Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour provides a tight-knit, laugh out loud, heartfelt story of six girls making their way through life. The raw authenticity generates a warm and relatable vibe of no strings attached purity and fun. Our Ladies is an unmissable production which I highly recommend you go and see!

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour runs at the Duke of York's until November 2nd 2017

Friday, 19 August 2016

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour, National Theatre | Review


Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour
National Theatre, Dorfman Theatre
Reviewed on Thursday 18th August 2016 by Olivia Mitchell
★★★★

If you love the feeling of leaving the theatre in a mass of smiling, contented, glowing audience members then this is 100% the show for you. Its an hour fifty minute show with hilarious dialogue and exuberant singing which combines music by Jeff Lynne, Handel and more, all of which contrast and take you on the journey of these girls. The show, an adaptation of Alan Warner's 1998 novel The Sopranos is an absolutely joyous time and a celebration of life and living.

Monday, 14 August 2017

In Conversation With... Kirsty MacLaren | Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour | Interview

I'm back with another Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour post (see my recent interview with Karen here)! Today I bring you a chat about all things Our Ladies with the lovely Kirsty MacLaren who plays Manda!



For anyone that doesn’t know, can you explain a little about your career and what your highlights have been so far?

Well, for me, doing Our Ladies has been the highlight. I’ve covered so many career goals on this job, from working with National Theatre of Scotland, performing at the National Theatre, touring internationally and now working in the West End. Plus originating a role is a pretty special experience. It’s been the job that has kept on giving, to be honest.

Before I started Our Ladies, and during the breaks we’ve had, I’ve been lucky to do some really diverse work where I’ve learned so much. I’ve worked at Pitlochry Festival Theatre for a year, played Lulu in a series of radio dramas and performed with companies like the Royal Lyceum in Edinburgh. These experiences give you the chance to really learn what it is to be an actor.


Were you born wanting to be a performer or did you have another career path in mind when you were younger?

I always has lots of energy as a child and was sent to dance lessons to tire me out. I come from a musical family so was always exposed to different types of music, although I didn't really know anyone who had acted professionally. I loved doing amateur dramatics and going to acting classes when I was little, but I had always wanted to be a lawyer until I sort of fell into doing the arts. I went to a Knightswood Secondary, which has a performing arts school attached, and knew then that I had to go down that path.


Our Ladies is just epically brilliant. When you first started working on it did you know it was something special?

I think that we were all so excited with this piece we had made that we weren’t really thinking about how much of a hit it might be. We certainly couldn't have imagined the success that we have had over the 2 years of doing it. The team that are on it are amazing and we were having such a good time creating this piece of theatre that was totally different to anything anyone had done before. But the reception that we got on our first night at the Traverse is something I’ll never forget.




I saw the show at both The National and at the Duke of York and it didn’t lose any of it’s intimate feel or charm. Does the way you work and rehearse change for different venues?

The show relies so much on story telling so whether you are in a small 100 seat venue or an 800 seat venue, that principle stays the same. What changes is how much you have to project in each venue, but as long as you think about telling the story to the person at the very back or top of the theatre, you can’t go wrong.


There are so many styles of music in the show. Does this come naturally or did you have to learn to sing different styles?

I’m trained in different vocal styles, but rarely do you have to mash them together in one show. It’s tiring on the voice, but once you build up the stamina, it becomes much easier.


How do you keep your voice healthy? Do you have any vocal rituals?

We always do a big group warm up together before the show which gets you ready. It’s really important to rest when you can. I’ve also got a vocal steamer helps stop your voice drying out.


Besides yourself, who would you like to see play your role?

I’m a big fan of Morven Christie. She’s seen the show and tweets about it a lot. I think she’d fit right in with us girls.


Can you sum up Our Ladies in five words?

Bold; life-affirming; hilarious; heartbreaking; female



Have you had any funny onstage or offstage mishaps in the show?

Often! We are always laughing at each other on stage. I remember going on with my mic on the outside of my clothes. The other girls didn't tell me until quite a bit through the show. I didn't know what they were laughing at until I eventually realised, and by that point, it was too late.


Is there a musical or play you’ve seen recently that you loved?

I’ve been able to see quite a lot of theatre this summer while I’ve been in London. I loved The Glass Menagerie and Half a Sixpence - both very different, but both brilliant.


Whats a fun fact people might not know about you?

I work as a fitness instructor in my spare time. Its a great job when I’m not acting as its flexible, plus I can fit classes in during the day when I’m working in a show.


What’s your best piece of advice for an aspiring performer?

Every opportunity is a good opportunity. Whether you're at youth theatre, am-dram, drama school or a professional show, you can learn from every experience. Listen to any advice you can get and never be scared to ask for help.



A huge thank you to Kirsty for doing this interview! 
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour runs at the Duke of York's until September 2nd 2017

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

In Conversation With... Karen Fishwick | Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour | Interview

I am an absolutely massive fan of Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour (it was number 5 in my Top 10 Shows of 2016) and its incredible cast. One of its members is Karen Fishwick who plays the role of Kay spectacularly. She embodies various other characters brilliantly and is just a fantastic performer. Karen was lovely enough to sit down and answer some questions and the show, the music and advice for aspiring performers.


For anyone that doesn’t know, can you explain a little about your career and what your highlights have been so far?

I went straight from high school to Motherwell College where I did two years of Musical Theatre (HND) and rounding off my BAhons on the Acting course. Before that, all through high school my summers were filled with any creative short courses I could possibly apply for - acting, opera, contemporary dance, circus. I wanted to do it all. I think these were valuable training without noticing it at the time.


Were you born wanting to be a performer or did you have another career path in mind when you were younger?

It was always there though I do remember a brief spell of hoping to become a zoo keeper. I remember playing defense on the school football team; everyone chased the ball to the other end of the pitch while I'd stand there on my own and sing. And thus my dazzling football career came to an end.


Our Ladies is just epically brilliant. When you first started working on it did you know it was something special?

Thanks, that's kind. No, I mean, you never know do you? You, of course, always hope a piece will be received well but if you go in thinking "this could be the next big hit" you're kinda focussing on the wrong thing. When I first read it, I was amazed at how different it was to anything else I'd ever auditioned for and that was thrilling. That made it stand out for me. I don't remember rehearsing and thinking oh wow, this is going to be nuts. It was really hard work, that's all we were thinking. Gotta nail this bit, then this bit. When the first audience response came at the Traverse in 2015, that was the moment. I'll never forget it.


I saw the show both at The National and at the Duke of York and it didn’t lose any of it’s intimate feel or charm. Does the way you work at rehearse change at different venues? 

Absolutely. With every single new venue we played, as soon as we got onto the stage it was "ok, what are we dealing with here". We need to know there isn't one corner we'll miss flinging this story at. Eye-balling the audience is one of my favourite parts of the show. The sound would feel different depending on how big or small and venue was. The huge rock moments or intimate confessions need to carry the same wether we're at the brilliantly close Live Theatre in Newcastle or the Theatre Royal in Brighton. Vicky always made sure it was the first thing we'd address.


There are so many styles of music in the show. Does this come naturally or did you have to learn to sing different styles?

A mixture, I think. The classical to rock stuff has different demands. Even within the ELO numbers themselves, they're songs are eclectic! Martin Lowe, our beyond wonderful MD leaves no stone unturned there and we worked hard with him on each sound. His attention to detail for each different style is what makes the show so successful. 


How do you keep your voice healthy? Do you have any vocal rituals?

I didn't sing in the play I did before this so a few weeks before we started rehearsal, I made sure I was strengthening it up. I found YouTube videos for that (thank you Verba Vocal Technique). I drinks tonnes of water and try to keep on top of tension in my neck and shoulders. Steaming is good. And not being hungover.


Besides yourself, who would you like to see play your role?

Can I pick anyone? Christopher Walken.


Can you sum up Our Ladies in five words?

Messy. Honest. Loud. Touching. Empowering.


Have you had any funny onstage or offstage mishaps in the show?

For sure. I panicked and took off one shoe once. Did a couple scenes without it. I really didn't know when I'd be able to put it back on. Another time, I accidentally threw a box of candy sticks straight into the face of a girl sitting on stage. Other venues didn't have a chair there, it was muscle memory gone daft! She lived.

Karen Fishwick (Kay), Caroline Deyga (Chell), Melissa Allan (Orla), Frances Maylie McCann (Kylah), Kirsty MacLaren (Manda), Dawn Sievewright (Fionnula)

Is there a musical or play you’ve seen recently that you loved?

I freaking loved Book of Mormon! I thought it was so funny and done so well. There's so such much I wanted to see but can't make; Angels in America, Hamlet


What’s a fun fact people might not know about you?

My great, great, great, great grandfather was a tiny little mushroom.


What’s your best piece of advice for an aspiring performer?

If you work as hard as you possibly can, you will not fail. You will not. What about luck? Work hard to generate it. Nothing will happen if you don't work for it.


A huge thank you to Karen for doing this interview! Keep your eyes peeled for another Our Ladies interview coming soon!
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour runs at the Duke of York's until September 2nd 2017

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

Saturday, 18 April 2020

Lockdown but make it Stagey | 7 Ways To Be Theatrical During a Pandemic

Hello stagey people! Olivia here, I hope no one minds these more chatty style posts, but with all that's going on I wanted to switch it up a little bit and bring some more relaxed posts about how we can keep ourselves sane, and of course stagey, in these trying times. So with that, I'm sharing some of the ways I've been spending my time so that it might give you some ideas.


Online Courses: I signed up for both the Open University free courses and the FutureLearn courses. They have lots and lots of free courses in a whole host of subjects, ranging from beginner to advanced and are a great way to kill some time whilst keeping your brain active. So far, I've done three geography courses (I'm a bit of a geog geek) and am mid-way through a film and a music course. I've found them to be hugely informative and I've got my eye on a number of the Arts ones, including Approaching Plays and What Is Good Writing? You can sign up for free one the websites and do as many as you like!

Theatrical Artwork: Okay, so I'm not technically doing the artwork but I'm colouring in so it kinda counts, right?! The lovely John and Kayley aka The Stagey Couple have created a brilliant colouring in sheet featuring loads of wonderful shows and it's just excellent. The pair are creative, original and consistent with their content and I'm sure this isn't the only activity they'll provide us with during this lockdown.


Streaming Shows: If you're reading this, I assume you know that there are a whole host of shows being put online as well as other musical related media. I must admit I haven't watched loads but I thoroughly enjoyed Eugenius! and Jane Eyre. Also, Encore on Disney+ is my new guilty pleasure! I'm really looking forward to the future National Theatre productions that are streamed (fingers crossed for Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour) and it's great that there's so much on offer.

Concerts: As well as all the wonderful shows, there's been a load of streamed and recorded concerts. The Leave The Light On series is an excellent showcase of performers resilience and talent and also a wonderful way to sneakily snoop in people's houses, which we all secretly want to do! All the creative initiatives have been lovely to see, with Rob Fowler and Sharon Sexton's release of Grounded their concert recorded live in their living room, proving a real favourite with the Bat fans! It's all just GREAT!

Q&As: This just seems like the most brilliant time to gain all the inside knowledge on this wonderful community we're part of and that's been easy to do thanks to the plethora of interviews being made available online. FYI I'm about to hit you with a self-plug... I recently started a podcast called Beyond The Boards with my friend (and amazing performer) Stephanie Rojas and we've been doing an interview series called Beyond the Isolation on our instagram. It's all about how creatives are thriving during this time and I've learnt some great things and felt very inspired.

Quizzes: If there's anything I've learnt during this lockdown, it's that I love a quiz! I can't even tell you how many I've taken part in but there are so many on offer and they're so fun! On Monday I took part in The Other Palace's theatre quiz and it was not only entertaining and informative, but was also a brill way of feeling part of the theatre community again. 

Baking: Okay so on the whole my baking has not been specifically theatre related but I feel like it's kind of automatically stagey 'cause it's near impossible to get your ingredients out without bursting into a Waitress number. I did make a pie inspired by the show the other day and it actually turned out pretty well so if you fancy whipping one up, I'll attach my video here. But yeah, baking is just real relaxing, just don't go Sweeney Todd to make it stagey!


So there are a few of my pandemic hobbies! I'm continually amazed at how well our community have come together to create and inform during this time and it can only make us stronger in the end! If you have any stagey ways that you're keeping entertained, let me know in the comments or on social media!

In saying all of this, it's also totally fine to do nothing during this time, you don't have to be working and grinding. Just do what calms you, what makes you happy and what you want to do. In a way we've been blessed with this time so use it however on earth you want!

Stay safe and stay stagey,
Olivia x

Tuesday, 8 November 2022

Benjamin Rauhala & his West End Besties at Cadogan Hall



Fourth Wall Live are delighted to announce BENJAMIN RAUHALA & HIS WEST END BESTIES at the Cadogan Hall on Sunday 5 February at 6.30pm. Tickets on sale now www.fw-live.com/ben 

 

One of Broadway’s most trusted music directors and collaborators, Benjamin Rauhala will be joined on stage by stars of the West End including Luke Bayer (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, Soho Cinders)Paisley Billings (Six, The Lion King, ‘Tattoo Fixers’)Lauren Drew (Six, Heathers, Legally Blonde, ‘The Voice’)Hiba Elchikhe (Everybody’s Talking About JamieAladdin)WhatsOnStage Award nominee Jordan Luke Gage (& Juliet, Bonnie & Clyde, Bat Out of Hell)Ben Joyce (Back to the FutureJersey Boys)Claudia Kariuki (SixWicked, School of Rock)Olivier Award nominee Frances Mayli McCann (Bonnie & ClydeHeathers, Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour), Zara MacIntosh (&Juliet, Six) Olivier Award nominee Natalie Paris (SixBilly Elliot, Les Miserables)Courtney Stapleton (‘Belle’ in Beauty and the BeastSix)Jodie Steele (Six, Heathers) Benjamin Yates (Jersey Boys, School of Rock, Wicked). Guests are subject to change. 

 

Music director Benjamin Rauhala’s love affair with the London theatre community and actors of the West End has been ongoing since his first sold-out concerts with Jeremy Jordan in the summer of 2016. Rauhala grew up obsessed with British pop music, including a subscription to Top of the Pops magazine! As a mainstay of the Broadway community, he has produced hundreds of sold-out concerts that spawned viral YouTube concert clips totalling * totalling over 56million views, including Jeremy Jordan’s ubiquitous cover of “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now” and the many medleys featured in his Broadway Princess Party concert series. 

 

Rauhala found that everyone he met in London had a favourite one of those videos and wanted to chat about it, so he had an idea: what if he gathered a dozen of his favourite West End performers with an epic band and re-created some of those beloved videos, as well as crafting some new arrangements for these amazing singers? On the heels of a sold-out run at Theatre Royal Drury Lane with Jeremy Jordan and in preparation to play the London Palladium with Ariana DeBose and for an upcoming international tour of Disney Princess The Concert, this was the perfect moment to create a concert unlike anything London has ever seen! BENJAMIN RAUHALA AND HIS WEST END BESTIES will be a night filled with Rauhala’s signature mashups and medleys, some of the best contemporary musical theatre, some radically rearranged Disney tunes, and, of course, tunes from the likes of Céline Dion, the Spice Girls, Selena Gomez, and Sam Smith! 

 

Benjamin Rauhala is the Music Supervisor, co-creator, and ‘Fairy Godfairy’ of Disney Princess - The Concert, touring over 100 cities in North America throughout 2022, and internationally in 2023. He helped conceive and arrange the opening and closing numbers of the 2022 Tony Awards for Academy Award winner Ariana DeBose. Rauhala has toured the world since 2014 as the music director forJeremy Jordan, the Tony-nominated star of Broadway's Newsies and TV’s ‘Supergirl’, and in 2020, Rauhala was named 'Best Musical Director' at the Broadway World Cabaret Awards.

 

His Broadway credits include Fiddler on the RoofAmerican Psycho, and Pippin. His Off-Broadway credits include Hit List, the meta-musical from the NBC television show Smash, Duncan Sheik’s The Secret Life of Bees and David Byrne’s Joan of Arc: Into The Fire. He is also the music director for Academy Award Winner Ariana DeBose, Halston star Krysta Rodriguez, Tony Award nominees Derek Klena, Jennifer Damiano, Kathryn Gallagher, and Disney legend Jodi Benson, as well as Nashville star Kyle Dean Massey, Anastasia star Christy Altomare, Smash star Andy Mientus, Moulin Rouge star Ashley Loren, and Frozen stars Caroline Bowman and Austin Colby. 

 

Rauhala co-founded the Write Out Loud songwriting competition with Mean Girls Tony Award nominee Taylor Louderman, which is currently in its fourth season of supporting the next generation of composers. Additionally, he is an Original Programming Producer at 54 Below, where he has created hundreds of sold-out concerts, including the Broadway Loves Series, that has famously honored Celine Dion, Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, Sam Smith, Demi Lovato, and many more beloved pop icons. 

Follow him @brauhala

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Olivia's Top 10 Shows of 2016

Without repeats, I saw 59 different shows this year so compiling this list has been difficult to say the least! This has been a brilliant year for theatre and through this website I really feel that I've become a part of the theatre community. 2016 has seen some brilliant big budget shows as well as smaller fringe ones, many of which have thrilled me. This list is of the shows that stuck with me long after I'd seen them and that I feel are very resonant in our 2016 world. This will probably be a bit of a long post, I have a whole year to fit in after all, so grab yourself a cuppa and some biscuits and enjoy!



This list is in reverse order, cause we all need that extra bit of excitement in our lives.


One of Paul Taylor-Mills' incredible productions of 2016. The music was performed beautifully and the touching and heartbreaking story of conjoined twins Daisy and Violet was told sincerely and gracefully by Laura Pitt-Pulford and Louise Dearman.




Did anyone not like this show? All I heard were incredible reviews and rightly so. An exciting and refreshing revival of a much loved Classic which ticked all the boxes of a hit musical. Charlie Stemp is talent on another level. I'm sure we'll be hearing plenty more good things about the show and cast in 2017!




This was my first visit to The Union Theatre and wow was it a good first. I absolutely adored this show. I was completely unfamiliar with the music and was just blown away by it. The cast were sublime and the story telling was impeccable. I'm sure this would be a huge hit if more people got to see it. 




27 must have been one of the most hyped musicals of 2016 and I could certainly see why when I saw it. It's a musical like I've never seen before, so fresh and different to what's currently on the West End stages. The plot twist at the end had me physically breathless, a stunning piece of artistry.




This was another small show but it definitely packed more than a small punch. It was sweet, pink, sassy and sumptuous. One of those shows which really made you think and reflect on your life. Lauren Samuels gave a standout performance!




I saw this show alone so the minute I stepped out of the theatre I called my friend to fangirl about it like a mad woman. I was completely awestruck by the whole performance. It was moving, funny, relevant and thought-provoking. The use of songs was done smoothly and effectively and it was overall just an A* worthy production.




This was the perfect treat to see just before Christmas. Although the story is slightly dated and everything is a little over the top, it's a fantastic production full of sweetness, heartbreak and love. Scarlett Strallen's performance was absolutely impeccable and nothing short of perfection. With the amount of people I've told to see this, I wouldn't be surprised if it gets a West End transfer in the near future. 




I've grown up with Rent so finally seeing it on stage was a very special experience for me. Each cast member is fully immersed into their roles and the whole production is raw, gritty and believable. Philippa Stefani gives the performance of a superstar and had me in floods of tears. The production will continue to tour next year and I'll certainly be seeing it again so don't be surprised if it features in my top 10 of 2017 too!




The St James theatre was on fire this year! The Last Five Years is another one which I've wanted to see on stage for years. Jason Robert Brown's story is heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time. It's always a joy to see Samantha Barks on stage and seeing her shine as Cathy was even more wonderful because of how incredibly she showed off her effortless belt and sincere acting. The wonderful mix of simplistic staging, the stellar duo of Barks and Bailey and Jason's beautiful music, rightfully earn The Last Five Years my number two spot!



1. Dreamgirls: Savoy Theatre

If you haven't heard about Dreamgirls' triumphant return to the West End then you must have been living in a cave. This was the 2nd to last show I saw and I couldn't be happier that I could end the year on such a fantastic note. This has got to be the theatrical spectacle of the year, the sets, costumes, choreography and cast are all exquisite and I cried a bucket load of happy tears, which I never do! Go see Dreamgirls in 2017, I guarantee you'll leave singing it's praises!



So there's my top 10 shows, of course there's other brilliant ones and I'm sure your list varies but this has been a brilliant year for theatre and I can't wait to see what 2017 brings *cough* Hamilton *cough* 

But wait, where's that other show that I've been posting and tweeting about like crazy and have seen 32 times!? I haven't forgotten it, I just wanted to give it a special mention because its such a special show. So my "The Show Which Changed My Life: 2016" award goes to IN THE HEIGHTS at the Kings Cross Theatre! I've done a billion posts on it (just search it on the homepage) so I don't need to write any more soppy words but this show has seriously been my everything this year. I've met incredible people from it, both fans and cast members and I'm so incredibly grateful for that. Unfortunately I won't be at the last show as I'm in Australia (boo hoo, woe is me, right?) but I'm so sad its closing, and I'm sending all my thoughts and positive vibes to the theatre gods that they will bring it back because I will never be ready for the lights to go down on Washington Heights! Thank you In The Heights for being there and helping me and I'm sure many others, through tough times and making us feel at home in the theatre. Even if you had no idea how you were helping, I guarantee you made some tough days just that much easier. No pare sigue sigue!



I hope you had a brilliantly theatrical year too and I'd love to hear your favourites so drop me a comment on here or tweet me @OliviaMitche or @RewriteThisWeb 

Au Revoir 2016! Stay Stagey, 2017!

Sunday, 3 September 2017

In Conversation With... Stacey McClean and Stevi Ritchie | Sword and the Dope | Interview

Sword and the Dope is a musical retelling of the story of King Arthur, written by a dyslexic who can not read or write music but wrote the show as a bet/joke with a friend. It has now gone out for over 150 shows at three different venues prior to this run. Sword and the Dope stars Stacey McClean and Stevi Ritchie who sat down with Rewrite This Story to talk all about the show.



Can you both give a brief overview of your career and what your highlights have been?

Stacey: I was once a member of pop band S Club Juniors. Highlights from my time in the band were probably performing a Wembley and for the Queen at Buckingham Palace. Also getting down to the final 24 and performing for Kylie in Dubai when I went to the judges houses for X Factor.

Stevi: I started performing at the age of 15 at my high school in Grease the musical and played Kenickie. I've always loved performing but got many knock backs. But 2014 I entered the X Factor and since then life has changed.


You’re both musicians, how has the transition to concert performances to musical theatre been?

Stacey: In ways it is very different. Put me on stage with a mic and a band and I can do it with my eyes closed, but theatre is a little more challenging for me. It's a lot more intense, there is a lot of preparation involved and a lot more a stake. 

Stevi: For me it's been amazing and I've always loved musical theatre I trained at LSMT. Playing a prince in this show is great and taking me out of my comfort zone but I love it.


Can you explain what The Sword and the Dope is about?

Stacey: Sword and the Dope is a comedy musical with a politics edge. Think Monty Python, Black Adder and politics in a way you have never seen! 

Stevi: A sideways telling of King Arthur with a modern day political twist. One review said British humour at it's best with great musical numbers, for me that sums it up well. 



What drew you to the production? Are your characters anything like you?

Stacey: I play Sir Lancelot, a Knight who is a huge fan of the Green Party, so nothing like me really as I'm not into politics in the slightest. My character reminds me of Hermione from Harry Potter, slightly irritating, bit of a know it all who no one wants to listen to. The script was what sold it for me initially, I laughed my head off when I first read it. 

Stevi: I loved the script and especially the songs they are amazing. The character is similar to me it's cheesy and he loves singing.


The Sword and the Dope is a retelling of the story of King Arthur, if you could retell any story which would you choose?

Stacey: Amy Winehouse, now that would be a fantastic role!

Stevi: I would retell the story of maybe Bruce Lee or Elvis Presley or Freddy Mercury.


Can you sum up the show in five words?

Stacey: Funny, ridiculous, offensive, rude and camp! 

Stevi: Witty, camp,cheesy,Funny,eccentric.


Is there a play or musical you’ve seen recently that you loved?

Stacey: I have been to see Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at the Duke twice now I loved it so much.  

Stevi: I love Les Mis and Grease.


Do you have any dream roles?

Stacey: Dream role would probably be Sophie in Mamma Mia, the lead vocal in Thriller and anything Disney!

Stevi: Yes, Thenadier in Les Mis or Kenickie in Grease.


Whats a fun fact people might not know about you?

Stacey: I was one belt away from a Black Belt in Taekwondo when I was 7 but I gave it up because I wanted to sing!

Stevi: Think everyone knows everything about me due to the press and being in the public eye.


What’s your best piece of advice for an aspiring performer?

Stacey: You have to have a thick skin in the industry otherwise you won't survive. The amount of times you get knocked back is not necessarily a reflection of how good you are, and that's something you have to be prepared for. I'm a firm believer that you get out what you put in.


Stevi: Just keep going and be you.


Thank you Stacey and Stevi for this interview. The Sword and The Dope is on at Waterloo East Theatre from Tuesday 5th September until Sunday 1st October.

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

*this is a sponsored post*