If i had to have a soundtrack to my life Lady Gaga would feature massively on it.
In 2011 a fantastic musical theatre singer joined our Bluecoat team in Prestatyn, North Wales. My then manager suggested she looked a little like Lady Gaga and thought that I along with her should work on a little cabaret tribute show to her. Beth, (Lady gaga) looked at us like we were nuts!! Not a pop singer at all she knew it was going to be a real challenge. If only we knew then what lied ahead. The adventures, stories and friendships this show was about to present us!
So grabbing her first albums we picked a few chart songs and put together a little show. Paired with what costumes we could throw together from our extremely dated costume room. I came up with some choreography and with two of the team dancers we finally had our show.
It became our regular Sunday night show in our second venue, Lunars. On at 11pm every week. We were genuinely surprised the reaction it got. People loved it!!! And Beth really sounded and acted like her. She was a real perfectionist, and studied her every move and really tried to imitate her voice. Which is why i believe people loved the show and it was so successful.
So when the season came to an end, and Britannia had sacked the entire team…a story for another time, we decided to move forward with the show. Let’s sell it ourselves, we thought! So we set out having a photoshoto done and putting together some promotional material. To do this was big step. And to be recognised as not just bluecoats selling one of their shows and being taken seriously was going to be hard!!
After a long thought process we decided to take the show to an abroad agent. We just weren’t going to get looked at in the UK without going away and getting established. Our other dancer decided the job wasn’t for her and went on to be successful elsewhere, so we were on the hunt for another dancer! It needed to be someone that could gel with Beth and I well, as we had developed a really close friendship by now. Someone that was going to support what we had built already. So the date of the audition for our agent came through and i needed a dancer. So i put an ad out of Facebook to see if anyone could come help me out just for the audition. They needed to learn 2 dances and that was it. Just help us look like we were a unit and we would be fine! I got quite a few replies, and as soon as my friend Lindsay messaged i knew she’s be ideal. We had dance together as blues a year or so before and we had got on great so it was sorted. She was going to come to the audition and pretend she had been with us from the get go!
So this day was the first time Beth and Lindsay had ever met. The day we auditioned to go away. Luckily they were brill actresses as we got the gig! The gig that totally changed our world.
Cyprus here we come!!!
6 months of touring the hotels, clubs and bars was ahead of us!! Sun sea and Singing. We were so excited!! I don’t want to focus on Cyprus too much as i will defo have to much to say! Thats a whole other blog!!!
We were with an agency out here.
I say agency…. more like one man mafia who had monopoly on every hotel and bar or club over there! He was SCARY!!!!! I cant quite describe the scenes of his office. Big greek man, smoking cigars, counting cash with a picture of Audrey hepburn behind his head! It was extremely surreal.
We soon learnt that if you were liked and good you got gigs. So we worked our arses off to ensure this. We kept our heads down and kept professional. We had our uniform and were always well presented.By high season we performed 7 nights a week 2 shows a night. In 50 degree heat…it was tough!!!
But we LOVED IT!
We took this chance to promote our show. This is where i love social media!! For those of you that hate it i do understand, but when you work in this industry it can mean everything! We posted regularly of our gigs and promoted our Facebook pages. This generated a bit of buzz for us back home in UK. By the end of the season here we had been offered a full UK tour for the following year!! Cyprus had totally paid off! And it was safe to say that it made our friendship!!! I absolutely loved these girls and we had been through every emotion while we were there! Happiness, sadness, anger, fraustration, hurt, exhaustion,hunger and hysterics. We had been inseparable for 6 months. Yet we came out stronger than ever!!!
We returned back to the Uk in September time, and we soon had plenty of gigs come in! We knew now we needed to up our look and promotional stuff so i researched lots and we had a photo shoot done. She had just bought out a new album so we wanted to re-create some of those looks. I decided to have a go at making a few costumes too! Ready for our tour starting in march. I saw on esty how to make the bubble dress so i thought i’d give it a go!! I dont think i did too bad but i’ll let you be the judge of that……
When March came around we were ready. Performing at different parts of the country every night and spending 8/9 hours on the road to get to a gig was madness.Some days we spent hours on the road, and saw many things that scarred us for life, including a car on fire in middle of the road causing us to reverse down the motorway, a proposal at 70mph and a suicide jumper that landed inches from my car!!! It was always DRAMATIC!
When we arrived at each park we always had the park dancers that knew the show and joined in It was like creating a concert. Our ultimate goal. The UK tour was very full on and a million miles away from the sun in Cyprus. We still loved it though! The guests really received the show well and we gained quite a little following. We went on to tour in the UK until 2015! So many stories and so many funny moments. Some of the best moments for me were going out to crowds of a few thousand, all up on their feet singing the words. Whilst pyros went off above our heads, fireworks steaming down! There was no buzz like it.
The show naturally came to and end when we all went on to do our own things. Beth along with hr husband started up A&B stage school in Whitehaven, Cumbria. Lindsay went on to do some touring in Lightrix and now appears in Legends, Blackpool. I continued touring with other shows and working on my own business, MAD Productions.
As i said before this show was such a massive part of my life and one of my biggest achievements by far!! We have a reunion planned for next year and i REALLY hope we can make this happen. Of course i will be shouting it out if so…. so watch this space!
I honestly believe this show was successful down to the chemistry of us three. We spent years living each others pockets and it could have ended badly. But they are both a huge part of my life and since getting married, having babies and moving in with partners we’ve supported each other through everything. Im so lucky to call these girls my batteries!
“So put your paws up monsters!!!!”