Q&A: The BBC Radio 2 Voice of Musical Theatre, Aimie Atkinson
PUBLISHED: 16:18 15 February 2010 | UPDATED: 14:48 20 February 2013
The BBC Radio 2 Voice of Musical Theatre, Aimie Atkinson tells Hannah Gray about her dreams of the West End, the hidden treasures of Hertfordshire and a very special concert in Cardiff
How old are you?
I am 19 years old.
Where do you live?
How long have you lived there?
I have lived in Stevenage my whole life.
Who do you live with?
I live with my mum Faith and my cat Milo.
Tell us about your training.
I went to Collenswood School, Stevenage, where I completed my GCSEs. I then went to study a BTEC in performing arts at the Susi Earnshaw Theatre School in Barnet. I have now gained a place at the prestigious Royal Academy of Music in London, to train on a post graduate one-year intensive course in musical theatre run by the well-respected singing teacher Mary Hammond. The course is supposed to be for people who have already received a degree but I got in even though I do not have one.
When did you start singing?
I started singing very young as my dad Tom Atkinson was in a band and we used to sing all the time, mostly rock songs as that is what he specialised in. I then really got into it when I joined Fusion performing arts in Stevenage. This is where I realised that this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I appeared in many productions with Fusion and that is where I learnt how to sing.
What are your ambitions?
I want to play a lead role in a West End musical and after that, who knows? I would love to record an album, maybe of all the new musical songs that people haven't really heard as there is so much more to musical theatre, so many wonderful shows that people haven't found yet. I would love to create a part in a musical and be the first person to sing that role. I think that would be my biggest dream. But most of all I just want to have a long career as I just love musicals so much that it doesn't really matter if it's West End or fringe, I want to keep doing it.
Where is the best venue in Hertfordshire you've performed in?
There are so many wonderful places to perform in Hertfordshire but my favourite would have to be the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage. It just holds so many special memories for me now. It was the place where I first sang in a musical and it was such a great experience that I hold a very special place in my heart for the theatre.
What has been your favourite performance to date?
There have been so many favourite performances but I think one that tops them all is when I won the BBC Radio 2 Voice of Musical Theatre competition. It was held at the great New Theatre in Cardiff. I had to go through so many rounds of auditions and finally I got to sing with a 30-piece orchestra. It was the most amazing experience - the sound was huge and the set was beautiful, a big staircase down the centre of the stage. The competition was judged by Elaine Paige, Michael Ball and Julia McKenzie, some of my biggest heroes. When I won I couldn't believe it.
Where is your favourite town or village in Hertfordshire and why?
I love Stevenage, obviously, because it's my home town, but I also love the smaller villages for their beauty like Codicote, Knebworth and Ashwell.
Sum up Hertfordshire in one sentence.
Hertfordshire can seem plain on the outside but on the inside it is full of hidden treasures just waiting to be discovered.
Article taken from the August issue of Hertfordshire Life