Strictly Come Dancing fans are in for a treat when the 2016 champion, Joanne Clifton, takes to the stage at the Millennium Forum in Flashdance – The Musical later this month.
Joanne, who plays Alex in the hit show, spoke to the ‘Journal’ from Torquay, ahead of the run of shows in the Forum from Monday, March 19 to Saturday, March 24.
Although she has been a professional ballroom dancer her whole life, Joanne always dreamed of a career in musical theatre, and now has a chance to fufil it.
“I’m very happy in musical theatre, I feel at home on the stage. I alwyas wanted to do it since I was a kid. I feel better playing a character than I do being myself as I was always really nervous speaking on Strictly, but by playing a character I can hide behind that,” she said.
Joanne bowed out of Strictly Come Dancing on a high in 2016 after taking home the Glitterball trophy with dance partner Ore Oduba.
“I just love Strictly, ballroom dancing has been my life. Luckily we were able to win it with Ore. We didn’t expect it at all, we were so shocked.
“I thought that after winning it, it was probably the best time to follow my other childhood dream of musical theatre.
“Flashdance and Strictly are tough for different reasons, both are very tiring, but Strictly is more stressful as you’re teaching someone each week and have to help them with nerves.
“Physically, we are dancing a bit easier because we have beginners, but with Flashdance it is more full on, street, hip hop, high energy style dancing,” added Joanne.
Flashdance - The Musical tells the inspiring and unforgettable story of 18-year-old Alex, a welder by day and ‘flashdancer’ by night, who dreams of going to the prestigious Shipley Dance Academy and becoming a professional dancer.
When a romance complicates her ambitions, she harnesses it to drive her dream.
Joanne is joined by former boyband star Ben Adams, who plays Nick Hurley, and she said the pair get on “really great.”
She added that Derry audiences are in for a “great night out” at Flashdance - The Musical. “I think that if they are looking for a really great night out they just have to come an dsee it.
“It has all the iconic moments and songs from the film. There’s even a megamix at the end!”
Tickets are now on sale from the Millennium Forum Box Office on 02871264455 or via millenniumforum.co.uk