Geordie pop princess Cheryl Cole popped into the BBC Radio 1 studios to promote her new single Call My Name with an interview with DJ Chris Moyles. After Moyles quizzed her about the impending Girls Aloud reunion and when she had last seen her other bandmates she asked him whether he had seen her bandmate Kimberley Walsh in the hit West End show Shrek The Musical at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane
Moyles admitted that he hadn't yet been, to which the star pressed "I advise you do, it's a great show. She's amazing". Cole has always seemed closest to her fellow bandmates Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh, with Walsh having lent a sympathetic ear and moral support during her friend's much publicised ups and downs over the last couple of years. The seed for Walsh's tenure in Shrek The Musical was sown when the three girls and bandmate Sarah Harding did a TV documentary, The Passions Of Girls Aloud, in 2008. In the ITV2 series the girls explored an avenue they felt passionately about. Cole's love of street dance led to her landing a guest spot on the video for will.i.am's solo single Heartbreaker. The connection between the two stars led to her vocals being added to the UK version of the single, and the burgeoning friendship led to the singer/producer getting heavily involved in Cole's two solo albums.
Walsh however had always dreamed to perform in a West End show. The tv show saw her put through her paces learning the different vocal disciplines that a stage performance requires. By the end of the episode she got to perform the song Lovely Ladies alongside the cast of Les Miserables during one of the show's performances and also performed an encore of On My Own to a delighted theatre audience. She stated at the time "the range for musicals is huge and you have to sing everything clearly. I haven't used my upper register for years". This exposure and her strengthened resolve to pursue her dream helped her to secure the role of Princess Fiona in the current West End production of Shrek, which she took over earlier than expected from Amanda Holden who vacated the role due to her pregnancy in early October 2011. Walsh has been well received in the show and is currently scheduled to feature until 21st May. Ex-Hollyoaks actress Carley Stenson will then take over the role alongside original Donkey Richard Blackwood, fresh from her stint as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde at the Savoy Theatre. The show has recently been extended until 31 March 2013.
Book Shrek The Musical tickets online now.
[posted by James, 25/04/2012]