Tuesday, 4 June 2019

INTEVRIEW: Millie O'Connell, currently in the cast of SIX at the Arts Theatre

Millie O'Connell is currently playing the role of Anne Boleyn in the hit musical SIX at the Arts theatre. Her other credits include Ensemble in Thoroughly Modern Millie (UK Tour); Ensemble/us Annie in 42nd Street (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane); Ensemble/us Peggy Sawyer in 42nd Street (Theatre Du Chatelet); Slave of the Ring/us Jasmin in Aladdin (Civic Theatre) Television Credits include The entire universe (BBC); Endeavour (ITV) & The Peoples Strictly (BBC). 

Tell us a bit about Anne Boleyn’s Story.

Anne Boleyn is the 2nd wife of Henry! She was BEHEADED!! She is perceived as a temptress and a seducer, calculated in every move she mad but actually ... she is just a fun loving girl who wanted to have some fun!! She didn’t even kiss Henry for 7 years when he was trying to woo her!!

What kind of research did you do to prepare for the role?

We had a one on one session with our directors and did research in rehearsals. A mind map of everything related and associate with Anne and who she is. 

How do you identify with the role?

I think Anne is the outspoken version of me! She does and says everything Millie would be to worried to say! She’s Millie X100 and I really enjoy channelling all my energy into her.

The Queenspiration for this role is Lily Allen and Avril Lavigne, how did you take that inspiration and make it your own?

I take Avrils rock punk, yet sensitive and naive to her own power, and Lily Allen’s laid back mischievous ‘I’m going to say it anyway’ attitude! 

This show has really catapulted into London and people are loving it! Why do you think it has been so successful?

It’s so relatable. It lifts you up and makes you feel important and empowered. 

Let’s go back to the start, how did you find out about the show?

Lucy Moss The Director got in contact with me then called me in to audition for Anne! I’ve known Lucy for years so I feel so honoured that she thought of me. 

What was your audition like?

I did a dance routine, then a singing audition then read through scripts. It was a great day! I got offered the job the following day, I was so excited. 

Previously you were in shows like Thoroughly Modern Millie and 42nd Street, so this style is slightly different! How has it been making that change?

I love all styles of Dance and Musical Theatre. To dip my toe in each pool has always been a dream, and I’m so excited for the future to continue to explore all different styles and genre’s of our beautiful industry. 

Unfortunately, the tour of Thoroughly Modern Millie came to an abrupt end by closing early, but how has it been coming from that into one of the most talked about new West End shows?

Going from Job to Job is always new and exciting as it’s a whole new shift! I enjoy this so much as I love fuelling my body with new creative content. I’m so grateful also to all our incredible fans who love us and this show. It really makes me realise how special this show is. So thank you! 

You were recently nominated for an Olivier Award alongside you fellow Queens, congratulations! Tell us about how and where you found out.

I was on a train and had to silent cry of happiness. I then had to take myself into the middle of two carriages so I could scream and call everyone! 

What was it like representing SIX at the Olivier Awards?

It was beautiful. I feel honoured to be a small part of something incredible. 

Do you have any advice for those who would love to be in this show one day?

Yes! BE. YOURSELF. Be the beautiful person you are and stay true to you. 

If you could play any of the other Queens, which one would you play? 

I would love to play Jayne Seymour. 

Why should people come and see Six?

If you want to walk out feeling empowered, loved and strong come and see SIX! It’s for everyone no matter what age.

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