Above: Paul Spicer, Sheridan Smith & Julie Atherton.
5 quick questions
A Tom in OZ EXCLUSIVE
For those who don’t know the name
Paul Spicer you should!
Paul was partially responsible for the UK ensemble of stars that made the wonderfully campy YouTube sensation “Portrait of a Princess” fronted by Avenue Q and Ordinary Days star Julie Atherton. The video features none other than Olivier Award-winner Sheridan Smith, star of BBC's Being Human Russell Tovey, ex-History Boy Steven Webb, singer/songwriter Tom Parsons, Jersey Boy and S Club 7 favourite Jon Lee and of course Avenue Q star Paul Spicer The song was written by Michael Bruce..
Paul and Julie are London-based theatre friends of Russell Tovey and they both follow his adventures using my Twitter account @RussTov_FanSite. Recently I asked Paul if he would like to attempt my “5 Quick Questions” on Twitter but instead, he offered to give me more expanded answers and emailed me his responses.
On a personal note I would like to thank Mr Paul Spicer for this interview and wish Paul and his intended all the best as they are to be married this coming Saturday 27th August 2011.
1 ) Who do you credit for being the reason you got into showbiz? Why?
I had one very inspirational teacher who always made sense of the longing I felt as a kid to be on the stage. She was quite instrumental in getting me out there and believing in myself. I have to say I'm a lot like Adele in that the Spice Girls really made me sit up and go, 'if they can do it, then I certainly can!'. I'm a child of the 80's / 90's so there was that whole manufactured pop thing happening and I wanted to be in a boy band. I had a near miss with the band “Five” which I was very close to being a part of and in hindsight I think that would've been a bad idea being 15 years old at the time. A lot of my mates at that age were getting famous and really taking control of their lives, following their dreams so I was surrounded by inspiration.
2) I know you are an accomplished singer, dancer, actor, producer, writer, director etc....but which one could you live without if you had to give something up?
I think if I had to choose I'd say dancing because after 10 years of working in pretty heavy dance musicals like Saturday Night Fever my body is a little broken! I actually choreograph now which is this whole other part of my creative brain that needs satiating every so often - I love to do that and it's not so hard on the old knees and back.
3) What is your latest theatre piece going to be, and are you currently writing it etc? If not writing something new will you be back on stage within the near future in someone else's show?
I have no current plans to return to the stage but I will be singing in a couple of concerts here and there. When I'm not performing or producing I work closely with students at the country’s best musical theatre colleges Mountview and ArtsEd (where I did my training). I think it's very important as a creative person to keep your hand in with the new generation of performers and try to nurture them and give a helping hand. I also produce theatre and we have Idina Menzel in concert at the Royal Albert Hall in October which is exiting.
4) I know that you and your "stage wife" Julie Atherton are currently enjoying teaching master classes because I have seen the FaceBook responses from participants but could you see this becoming a full-time activity or would you like to set up a permanent production company to teach aspiring thespians?
There's a part of me that would love to start a course of some description, and in some ways this year Julie and I have done exactly that. We see our students regularly and we've seen some great progress from some of them. Teaching for me is a way of reminding myself how to keep connected and open as a performer. You learn so much from watching other people.
5) Having been a part of "Portrait of a Princess" with Russell Tovey & Julie etc...Is there a possible ensemble piece you could do as a follow-up?
Ha! I'd love to! I've always wanted to present some kind of live action version, or maybe extend the Princess's story and write an hour special where we get to really explore her world. Trouble is with moments like that, you sometimes should leave them be because what made them special was their uniqueness at the time. It's had over 100,000 hits on YouTube in 5 months which is insane.
Cheers, Paul Spicer
90 Long Acre, Covent Garden, WC2E 9RZ
tel: 0207 849 3502
Our YouTube Music Sensation
TMarkstahler: @RussTov_FanSite Loved reading the Q&A and wish @Spiceboy81 loads of love and happiness 4 his marriage - not necessarily in a Disney way ;-)
BoyVirginiaMade: @RussTov_FanSite I love reading interviews like that, especially when the interviewee is candid about his experiences! #inspiring
RussTov_FanSite: @BoyVirginiaMade Mr @Spiceboy81 is one of those men who spends a great deal of time behind the scenes to help aspiring actors...U shud talk!
Mavro_Arni: @RussTov_FanSite Nice interview, Tom.
NoNoNannette30: @Tom_In_Oz_ Very nice interview!!! How great it must have been to have been able to ask him questions, and him answer them at such lengths!
Tom_In_Oz_: @NoNoNannette30 it was really excellent of @Spiceboy81 to give me full-length answers...we might do it again soon with @Julie_Atherton x
NoNoNannette30: @Tom_In_Oz_ @Spiceboy81 @Julie_Atherton That would be great! Would love to read that one also! ;)