Brenda Edwards has Tea With Wilma chatting about MOBY DICK!
You have performed in some amazing shows so far like Hairspray, We Will Rock You and Chicago. What have been some of your career highlights so far?
There are so many, but to come up with a few, I loved the chance of performing at the 10-year anniversary evening of Chicago, I enjoyed driving a Cadillac on stage at the Royal Festival Hall when I played Pearl in Carmen Jones and it was always a real pleasure to get to perform with Brian May and Roger Taylor whilst playing Killer Queen in We Will Rock You!
You are about to star in Moby Dick! The Musical at the new Union Theatre. What is the show about and what attracted you to the part you are playing?
It’s set at a girl’s school (St. Godleys Acadamy) which is in financial trouble and being threatened with closure so the girls decide to put on a school production of Moby Dick, to try and raise money and prevent bankruptcy. I am playing a teacher at the school called Mrs Mona Lott but in the school production I play the role of frustrated Esta who is the wife of Captain Ahab. She is a funny character, which is a role I have not yet had the opportunity to play in my theatre career! I see it as a challenge that I’m really looking forward to.
Moby Dick! The Musical hasn’t been seen in the UK since 1992. Do you think the show is still as relevant to audiences as it was almost twenty-five years ago?
Absolutely, in fact, I think in someways it’s more relevant and perhaps more needed. The high camp, high energy style of the piece allows the audience to just escape, enjoy and laugh for a few hours. In today’s world, I think everyone needs that once in a while.
Who are your biggest inspirations in the theatre industry and why?
My original background is music and most of my inspirations are artists like Tina Turner, Whitney Houston and Diana Ross. But as a cross over to theatre it has to be Brian May – his passion for music and dedication to his art are something that I really took stock of when I worked with him on We Will Rock You.
What has been the funniest or most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you on stage?
I think my most embarrassing moment was when I was playing Killer Queen performing “Another One Bites the Dust” and I slipped and ended up flat on my bum it was not easy to get back up as I was wearing the heavy bulleted costume but it took about 15 seconds to pull myself up I had to drag myself over and hold on to the side tresses, I kept singing though whilst on the floor “the show must go on” right?! Lol
Apart from acting, what is your biggest passion?
My biggest passion would be singing and cooking!
We are living in a time where films are often being turned into stage plays and musicals. If you had to choose one, what film would you like to see adapted to the stage?
Pride and Prejudice. I love that film. I love all period dramas.
If you could be the opposite sex for the day, what theatre role would you love to have a go at playing?
I’m going to be cheeky here and make a couple of choices. If I only had one day, I’d probably pop over to The Queens Theatre and do an Act 1 of Jean Valjean in Les Mis. It’s such an iconic role, what man wouldn’t want to do it? Then during the interval I’d run on over to The Adelphi and have a go at Lola in Kinky Boots… How much fun must that be for a man to play? All that Sass!!
If you won the lottery and could stage one theatre show of your choice, what would you choose and who would be your dream cast?
This is such tough one because there are so many stories out there that haven’t been seen on stage yet. I’m going to go with a favourite film of mine – Sleepless in Seattle! I love it… The story is beautiful and with the right writers to adapt it, I think a stage version would be really successful. It could work as a play or a musical but I think I’d bill at as play with music and put it in a really intimate theatre.
Why do you think people should come and see Moby Dick! The Musical?
People should come to see Moby Dick because it’s a light fun filled show with some fantastic musical numbers.
Thanks for having Tea With Wilma
MOBY DICK! plays at the Union Theatre from 12 October – 12 November 2016