Lower Fourth pupil, Ananya Kailasam (Je), has successfully gained a scholarship to attend the West End Music Theatre School and is currently in rehearsals for the UK premiere of a junior production of Moana in the West End. Ananya will play a lead role. She has also been cast as a lead role in a new ‘kids spy film’ and will be filming in Europe throughout the summer.
Ananya said: “I found the audition for West End Musical Theatre around a year ago, right about when I got my agent. To be honest, I was at home in lockdown, just a little bit bored. I was looking for things that I could get involved with, and sent in an audition tape. I didn’t really expect to get in, but I was really happy when they told me I was succesful, and had even got a scholarship. I now train every Sunday in London with West End professionals and it has opened up so many exciting opportunities for me.
Theatre is something I have always wanted to do. I have been performing in small shows from the age of seven. It is so exciting that I now have the opportunity to perform in the West End.
I have had a lot of help from my music teachers at Epsom. Mrs Johnson-Hyde, my singing teacher, is a really key part in making sure I choose the right song for particular auditions. We go through them together until they sound good. She has also helped me with my singing technique and my performance skills.
Other teachers, like Mr Johns, have helped me gain the confidence I need to get up in front of a panel of casting directors and judges and give it my all.
I’m playing Tomatoa in the UK’s first-ever production of Moana Junior and it has been such a fun experience. The style of the show is very different to what I usually do – the main body of the show sees people pretending to be an ocean.
Rehearsals are going really well, and I am loving being part of it. We are a pretty big company so it is so much fun rehearsing and performing together.”