Star of Fame - The Musical chats to the Citizen
by Amanda Devlin
A brand new musical production has transformed an Oscar-winning film from the 80s into the present-day as star-struck wannabes embark on their quest for the ultimate accolade - Fame.
And it arrives at Milton Keynes Theatre on Monday, with young actress Jodie Steele starring as Carmen Diaz.
Jodie, who trained at Guildford School of Acting with a first class honours in Musical Theatre, spoke to the Citizen about her own journey to fame in the musical industry.
“I couldn’t believe it when I got the part,” says Jodie.
“I’m not a Latino and I was the only blonde at the audition, but I kept getting through and I could see the other girls thinking ‘who’s this blonde chick?’
“When it got down to the yes or no, they said no initially because of my ethnicity, but in the end they didn’t like the way anyone else did it so I have to count my blessings for that.
“When I finally got a yes I was at my bar job and I just couldn’t believe it, it was amazing.
“I know what this industry can be like - one minute you’re on cloud nine and the next no one knows who you are, but at the moment it’s crazy because people are recognising me on the street.
“I still don’t feel famous at all, I’m just one of the cast. I still have to pinch myself sometimes, it’s pretty cool.”
Fame - the Musical has enjoyed seven West End runs since premiering in the USA in 1988 and continues to be performed all over the world.
It’s being directed by award winning director/choreographer Gary Lloyd whose credits include Thriller Live, 20th.
Jodie said: “This version of Fame that we’ve done is set in 2014, rather than the 80s, so there’s no leg-warmers and headbands, it’s more about the high tops and flat caps.
“There’s still the same music everyone loves and the same storyline, but it’s shown in a grittier way.
“I’s very raw and urban, it’s hip-hop - the youngsters can resonate with it as well as the older people who remember the film.
“We don’t hide anything, we don’t sugarcoat anything - it actually gets quite emotional.
“The song, Fame, is a club mix and there’s dubstep, so it’s all been updated but that makes it so much better.”
See it at Milton Keynes Theatre from Monday until Saturday. For tickets, call 0844 871 7652 (bkg fee) or visit
www.atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes (bkg fee)
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