Some of the biggest names in showbiz have sent their support to Musical Theatre students at Northampton College, who had their hopes of starring in their end-of-year performance dashed by COVID-19.
The Final Major Project (FMP) is the highlight of the course for students, the culmination of two years’ hard work and the chance to showcase their skills in front of a sell-out crowd, but the global pandemic thwarted any chance they had of appearing on stage.
To soften the blow, a host of West End stars have sent video messages to the students, wishing them well in their future careers and congratulating them on their work during their time at Booth Lane.
Among those to record a message was former Dr Who and I’m a Celebrity star John Barrowman, who said: “I want to say sorry that you’re not getting to perform your FMP but you’ve all come so far and done such great work over these two years. You should be exceptionally proud of what you’ve done and that’s really worth celebrating.”
Also passing on his best wishes was Kinky Boots star Callum Francis who added: “When I played in Northampton it was crazy special to me because it is based there. Missing your final show really sucks, I’m really sorry – this is a crazy, crazy time.”
Layton Williams, who plays Jamie in West End smash ‘Everyone’s Talking About Jamie’ said: “You’ve all done very well, I wish you could have performed your FMP which would have been sh-amazing!”
Dear Evan Hansen star Jack Loxton added: “You’ve done amazing work over the past two years. I hope you’re all safe and well and keeping engaged in musical theatre.”
The video messages were sourced by student Connor Allbright, one of those who missed out on appearing in the FMP.
He said: “It was a big blow to not be able to put on the show, we’d all worked so hard towards it. As part of my job at the moment I was having to get content from celebrities so I thought I’d ask some of them if they would record a message for my fellow students. It’s great to know they are supporting us and the whole industry is really sticking together at such a difficult time.”
Northampton College’s Musical Theatre students have a proven track record of hitting the big time, with several alumni now starring on stage in shows around the world.
The current crop have already hit the headlines this summer, with a ‘virtual cover version’ of classic feelgood song Somewhere Over The Rainbow attracting widespread national and international media coverage, including articles as far afield as Gibraltar.
Students compiled their version of the Judy Garland song ‘Somewhere Over The Rainbow’ from their own homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, each sending in videos of them singing and performing. The recordings were then stitched together and laid over an instrumental track to form a full music video which highlighted their hopes for the future as they look to emerge from lockdown life.