INTERVIEW: Alexandra Burke talks Sister Act ahead of its debut at Llandudno

Reporter:

Annie Roberts

ALEXANDRA Burke says it was third time lucky for the producers of Sister Act when they finally persuaded her to take on the role Deloris Can Cartier, made famous by Whoopi Goldberg in the 1992 film of the same name.

The X Factor winner and stage star has been touring the UK in the musical, which will run at Venue Cymru, Llandudno from May 22-27.

The 28-year-old tells the Pioneer she was approached for the part while playing Rachel Marron in The Bodyguard, for which she was cast in 2014, replacing singer Beverly Knight.

Burke admits she had turned the role down a couple of times before finally agreeing to take on the challenge.

She said: “It’s the soundtrack that got me to say ‘yes’! The context is the same as the film but all the songs are original and that is something very special.

“I watched the film many, many years ago, so I can’t remember how Whoopi was in the film – which I think is a good thing.

“It is daunting to take on such an iconic role. Any role I take on is daunting but it is a pleasure to take on the roles.”

The star first came to fame after winning X Factor in 2008 said her passion for music and recording is still as strong as ever.

She said: "I would like my fans to see I have grown. By the time I release my next album I will be nearly 30 and I'm taking my time recording it."

For now the singer is focused on her stage career and will be joined on stage for Sister Act by Karen Mann, known for her extensive work with West Yorkshire playhouse and Birmingham Rep, as Mother Superior; Aaron Lee Lambert (Sunset Boulevard alongside Glen Close) as Curtis; Joe Vetch (Saturday Night Fever, No 1 tour); Sarah Goggin (Bad Girls, The Union Theatre); Susannah van den Berg (Fiddler on the Roof, UK tour); and Liz Kitchen (Blood Brothers, West End).

Talking about her fellow cast members, Burke said: “I am always nervous before a show but everyone else (the rest of the cast) seem quite relaxed to me, but they’ve been doing it for years!

“I always get nervous but my mum always says that shows you care! I am quite a spiritual person so I like to say a prayer.”

She added: “I find being away from home the hardest part. I’ve now been on tour for about four years.” 

Directed and choreographed by Craig Revel Horwood, of Strictly Come Dancing fame, Sister Act follows the story of Deloris, a disco diva whose life takes a surprising turn when she witnesses a murder and has to hide out as a nun.
Burke says Deloris is a great character to take on.

“She’s a lot of fun to play and she’s not afraid to make a fool out of herself and I make a fool out of myself anyway,” she said.

“Craig (Revel Horwood) always tells me to just be myself so I think this role was made for me.”

Asked to sum up the show in three words, she said: “Fabulous, joyful and fierce”.

Three reasons for everyone to see it then when it takes to the Llandudno stage.

To book tickets, visit www.venuecymru.co.uk or phone the box office on 01492 872000.

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