Am dram star is Alex Young from Musical Youth Theatre Stafford
Our am dram star this week is 18-year-old Alex Young from Musical Youth Theatre Stafford. He’ll be appearing as teen heart-throb Troy Bolton in the group’s forthcoming production of High School Musical at the Stafford Gatehouse Theatre from July 11-14.
The movie version of High School Musical completely took the teen world by storm in 2006 and proved to be one of Disney’s most profitable exports. A stage musical followed, which attracted much the same attention.
Alex says: MYTS is the youth branch of MTS (Musical Theatre Stafford) and we have about 50 members aged eight to 18. We are a close-knit bunch. MYTS has performed shows for 11 years, ranging from the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe to Les Misérables.”
I ask Alex about his character and why he decided to audition to play Troy.
“Troy Bolton is the Jock who falls in love with a brainiac,” says Alex, “and I was attracted to the role because I remember performing in a showcase at primary school, where we sang songs from High School Musical. I remember singing Getcha Head in the Game, the basketball song and thought it would be me coming full circle, as this was my last year in education.”
Alex is sporty as well as theatrical and so the basketball song was an obvious draw, but how difficult is it to perform?
“It is hard, but I used to play netball with my mum so I’m hoping that will carry through into the show! I’ve also practiced a lot at rehearsals and I played a bit at school,” he says.
This is a huge role for a young performer, but so enjoyable and the basketball number is just one of Troy’s musical numbers.
“The main songs I’m in are The Start of Something New, Getcha Head in the Game, When There Was Me and You, I Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, Breaking Free and What I’ve been Looking For, as these are the ones I have solos in. However, I am also in many of the chorus songs too. The most challenging had to be We’re breaking Free because it has some really high notes!”
He loves being on stage and definitely feels as if his performing skills have improved during rehearsals.
“I am definitely better at learning harmonies because most of the male lines in the show are harmony,” he says. “I really enjoy the buzz of being centre stage, looking out at the audience, as it’s all or nothing. Also, at the end, when the audience are clapping there’s an immense sense of relief and pride, regardless of what role you play.”
l For tickets for, visit www.myts.org.uk or call 01785 619080.