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5 things you need to know about London's 'Tina Turner'

Andrzej Lukowski

Manuel Harlan

US singer and actor Adrienne Warren has landed the biggest new gig in the West End: she’s playing the title role in the Tina Turner musical ‘Tina’. She tells Andrzej Lukowski five things you need to know

1. She comes from a Tina-loving household

‘My parents are huge fans of Tina Turner and I don’t remember a time her music wasn’t played in our household. Even today when I go home for the holidays we always watch DVDs of her concerts. We dance to them together, we go crazy, it’s a whole to-do.’

2. It is kind of crazy that she got this gig

‘I was asked by my manager to go do a table read in New York, so I went to pick up the script and said “What role would you guys like me to read?” and they said “Tina” and I said: “oh there’s no way”. But I thought: well, this will be fun. We had everything against us because I had done two TV pilots that season and I thought at least one of them was going to get picked up. Sure enough they were both passed over. My manager said, “you’re not moving to LA – you’re moving to London”.’

3. The actual Tina Turner gave her tips

‘It’s always intimidating to meet your heroes but it was the most unbelievable experience. She is so graceful and giving after everything she’s been through in her life. She didn’t have to get involved with this musical, but when the opportunity was presented to her she thought maybe she had a bit more to say than the movie [“What’s Love Got to Do with It?”] portrayed or that we read in the book [“I, Tina”].’

4. It’s a perfect show for the age of #MeToo

‘It’s a serious piece of drama and I think it has to be so, because of the level of tragedy that took place in her life. And we do go through that journey of her time with Ike. But you see her come out of that as well and you see her stand on her own two feet and become her own woman and her own artist. You don’t need to go through domestic violence to appreciate her story and [see] why she has so many devoted fans and followers.’

5. It’s a tough job but she loves it

‘I think there are 26 songs in the show and I think I sing 24, 25 of them. I would argue that’s a record for a musical. I’m not even sure I should be talking now, right? By the end of the show I am tired, but it’s a dream job to go to work every day and sing this music. Those 25 songs go past quickly.’

‘Tina – The Tina Turner Musical’ is at the Aldwych Theatre until Oct 20. Get tickets here.

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