Louise Redknapp makes her stage debut in Leeds in one of the most famous musicals of all time later this month.
And she says she is looking forward to performing in the city after spending many years living in the north.
Cabaret opens at Leeds Grand Theatre on Tuesday, October 24 and the singer and television presenter has top billing as Sally Bowles.
Londoner Louise told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “Living in Liverpool for many years, I went to places like Leeds and Manchester a lot and I’m very comfortable in that part of the country.”
Redknapp rose to fame as a member of the girl group Eternal in the 1990s. She left the band to carve out a successful solo career and most recently wowed the nation with her dancing skills finishing runner-up in the 2016 series of BBC1’s Strictly Come Dancing.
She did however, admit that she was nervous ahead of the tour and her first theatre role, one which is so far removed from her own personality. She added that she wanted to make sure Leeds theatre-goers got what they were paying for.
Louise said: “Sally is a big character and she’s very flamboyant. For me, to play that takes a lot of work because I’m not naturally the person who pushes herself to the front of a line.
“I’ll always hover back and take my time, but she fully believes in herself and goes completely over-the-top. So for me it’s about losing all my inhibitions and giving it everything I’ve got.
“I’m so nervous. I don’t want to let myself down and I don’t want to let down the people around me. I want to do everyone proud and do Sally Bowles proud. I don’t take this role lightly and I don’t take being in the theatre lightly. I know it’s hard work and you have to give it everything you’ve got. People are spending their money to come watch you and you don’t want to disappoint them. You want them leaving the theatre really satisfied.”
She said her time on Strictly had helped, as has her friendship with her co-star and fellow pop singer Will Young, who will be playing The Emcee. The production turns Weimar Berlin of 1931 into a sassy, sizzling haven of decadence.
Since its Broadway premiere in 1966 – and the famous film version with Liza Minnelli and Oscar winner Joel Grey – Cabaret has won a staggering number of stage and screen awards including eight Oscars, seven Baftas and 13 Tonys.
This production, by Rufus Norris, has enjoyed two smash hit West End runs and has picked up two Olivier Awards.
It features some of the best known songs in musical theatre including ‘Money Makes The World Go Round’, ‘Two Ladies’, ‘Maybe This Time’ and of course ‘Cabaret’.