Get your dancing shoes on for the new touring production of the 80s classic Flashdance, which is currently making its way across the UK. The story is unforgettable as we follow 18 year old Alex who by day works as a welder and in the evening transforms into a 'flashdancer'. She dreams of going to the prestigious Shipley Dance Academy and becoming a professional dancer. Known for it's film, the new production from the award winning team at Sealladoor Productions will take on the inspiring musical about holding onto your dreams and love against all odds.
I caught up with leading cast members Joanne Clifton and Ben Adams about bringing the 80s to the now. For Strictly Come Dancing ex-professional Joanne Clifton this isn't the first time she's taken on musicals, fresh from leaving the show she explains that "the only thing thats different from Strictly is the style of dance". Joanne has switched from the ballroom to switching up the volume with Street and Hip Hop, which are styles she has never experienced before the role. However, Joanne explains theres a bigger challenge on stage than executing the choreography, "The other thing is riding a bike. I can't ride a bike and the first thing I have to do in the show is ride across the stage". She's got a year to master her cycling skills, we'll probably be seeing her take on the Tour De France in no time!
For Ben Adams who has always had some kind of performance influence element in his career, including the days of being in late 90s boyband A1 as well as also continuing to be an established song writer and producer has seen Flashdance as another great opportunity. Ben explains that "It's not really that different from the other things I've done because it's still performing". Joanne's character is Alex, the main thread that holds the musical together. Alex falls in love with Ben's Character Nick Hurley who sees the ambition within Alex and helps push her audition at the prestigious dance academy. Joanne explains that "one of my favourite parts in the musical is when there is a big argument between Nick and Alex over the audition". Ben spoke about how he was enjoying working alongside Joanne as a lead character and that "some of our scenes are our favourite together". You will be able to see one of those moments together when they release their recording of 'Here and Now' from the stage musical very soon.
Expect all of the songs, iconic scenes and love for the stage production as there has been for the film over the years. When Joanne takes on the water-drop scene, she says that she enjoys taking on that part of the show because "the audience are all waiting for that moment. It's like 2 tanks they've got coming down on me and I love seeing the audiences reactions to it". The new production of Flashdance is different to the one that was touring around 7 years ago. As Ben said "the script has been updated and things, there's new choreography and ideas into the production" so there's plenty new additions to expect. Ben explains Flashdance is "a high level energy show, there's a lot of dance in there. They can expect all of the songs that they all know from the film. The choreography is slightly different but there's nods to the film".
So why should you come and see Flashdance? To finish off I asked Ben and Joanne to give me 3 words to describe the production,
"Energetic, Fun and Wet!" - Joanne
"Energetic, Sexy and Wet!" - Ben
You can find out more about Flashdance and book tickets through the Selladoor Productions website.
Written by Emmie-Hope Newitt