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Q&A with West End performer & company director RACHEL BINGHAM

Rachel popped into the office of her partner Studytrips recently and they had lots of lovely questions for her about her workshops. Click the image below for the interview.

We know that Rachel has performed in shows such as Les Miserables, Billy Elliot and The Sound Of Music all in the West End but we also wanted to know what she did before she started her career? Was she always into performing? Did she do any classes growing up?

This is what we learned...

Rachel started dance when she was 3 years old and it became clear to her very early on that the performing arts was the career for her. Watching Les Miserables as a child she wrote in her diary that it was her dream to be in the show, playing any part, even the barricade! Rachel did acting, singing and dance lessons at two local dance schools in her hometown Woking, with the majority of her training being at the Karen Clarke Theatre School. As well as lessons Rachel took part in all of the shows and tried to do as much musical theatre as possible. It was with Karen Clarke that Rachel had the fantastic opportunity of performing at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000 and the school holds many wonderful memories for her, not to mention friends for life.

That's Rachel on the right as Ado Annie! #blastfromthepast

Rachel then joined Woking Youth Theatre taking the lead in the musical Salad Days and she decided to study drama further at Woking College. One day at the college Rachel saw a poster for NYMT, the National Youth Music Theatre, she had never heard of the company before but her drama teacher told her it was an amazing company to be involved with as a young person in theatre. Rachel auditioned and won the lead role of Ado Annie in NYMT's production of Oklahoma on tour and at the Peacock Theatre in London and her drama teacher was not wrong, it was an incredible company and gave her an incredible experience.

Rachel then auditioned for drama school and was very fortunate to be offered places at Bristol Old Vic, Arts Educational School, Guildford School Of Acting and the Mountview Academy Of Theatre Arts. Rachel fell in love with Mountview after completing a foundation course there and she then trained on their three year musical theatre degree course. Rachel adored her training at Mountview and she felt it really set her up for the industry. She played some lovely roles at college including Carrie in Matt Ryan's production of Carousel at The Bridewell Theatre and in her third year of training Rachel was chosen from her showcase by Gilbert And Payne Management who still represent her to this day.

Rachel (in a fat suit!) with Victoria Wood - Victoria Wood's Midlife Christmas

Do you have any questions for Rachel? You can ask anything about performing in the West End, training, tips for the industry, her workshops and more!

If you haven't already check out West End On Demand's courses and workshops!

Click HERE for our group workshops or HERE for our musical theatre courses for children, teenagers and adults.


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