Saturday 6 June 2020

Jaymi Hensley: Being on stage is the thing I’ve done the least

Swapping the pop group Union J for the most famous coat in theatre, Jaymi Hensley takes on the role of Joseph, as he and his amazing technicolour dreamcoat head to Cheltenham, for the show’s 2019 tour.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat is a stalwart of musical theatre, continuing to wow audiences with its colourful and uplifting retelling of a famous bible story, for decades.

New to the fold for 2019 is Union J star, Jaymi Hensley, who has been passed the Joseph torch by fellow The X Factor star, Joe McElderry.

For more information visit everymantheatre.org.uk directly.


What drew you to the role of Joseph?

It just felt right. Theatre was always my first love. I always envisioned myself on stage every day. But life took a different turn.

I believe in the universe giving you signs and the tools you need to make things happen. I did panto with Jimmy Osmond, who’s done Joseph, and then I met Joe McElderry, who’d also played Joseph.

All these signs were there. It was so bizarre. It just felt like I need to do this. And I’ve never felt like I’m more in the right place at the right time than I do right now.


Joseph is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Do you feel like the show stands the test of time?

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice are the best. They wrote this musical at university, and the songs are timeless.
You have songs here that, in 2019, don’t have to be modernised. We’re not changing anything at all, and that’s testament to how well written they are.

I know how dated the music I released in the last seven years is already, just listening to the charts!


What was it like to put on the famous coat for the first time?

At my opening night in Windsor, I got an out-of-body, hairs on the back of your neck moment. I had goosebumps everywhere and was rushing with emotion.

This is just such an amazing show to be a part of, I’m honoured that they’re letting me take the torch!

Is the limelight different in a musical than when you were performing with Union J?

What I love about a touring show is people are so grateful that you’re coming to see them, that you’re doing the leg work. People really appreciate that. Although I’ve been a pop star for the last seven years, being on stage is the thing I’ve done the least. It was all about being on TV or in a studio. The stage is what I love. I love being live in front of an audience, so to do it 10 times a week, I couldn’t be happier.
Live performance is so special too: seeing sweat on someone’s face, the passion and the being in the room with them – you can’t beat that.

You announced at the start of 2019 that Union J were splitting. What’s life been like since the announcement?

I have the fondest memories of that project, even when things were tough for us. I’ll be forever grateful to that band for giving me what it’s given me and the joy we’ve had over the years. In my adult life I’ve only done what I love. Very few people can say that. I would never take that for granted.

One day, hopefully, we can get back together and do a reunion and be together at a different time in life when it’s right again. As much as we were a band, we are individual people and we have individual passions


For more information visit everymantheatre.org.uk directly.

© SoGlos
Thursday 22 August 2019

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