A South Shields actress is hoping to blow the audience away when she appears in a brand new West End show.
Michelle Andrews is set to star alongside Catherine Tate in Miss Atomic Bomb when it opens at London’s St James Theatre next month.
The 23-year-old, whose real name is Michelle Smith, says she’s excited to be part of a brand new show.
The former St Wilfrid’s RC College pupil, who trained at Laine Theatre Arts in Surrey, said: “We’re in rehearsals at the minute and it’s so much fun to be part of a new musical.
“We’re all creating together and it is hard work, but it’s amazing to be involved in something right from the start. There’s a lot of expectation for it to be good but I have no doubt that it’s going to be brilliant. I’m really proud to be part of it.”
The show is set in 1952 as the US military proudly tests its atomic bombs within sight of the Las Vegas strip.
Based on a true story, it sees tourists flocking to town to cheer on the blasts and see who will be crowed the Miss Atomic Bomb beauty queen.
In the midst of the euphoria, farm girl Candy’s sheep have mysteriously died, her fashionista friend Myrna, played by Tate, is designing clothes for pigs, young soldier Joey has deserted the army, and his hapless hotel manager brother Lou desperately needs an atomic gimmick.
Michelle plays farm girl Rebecca and is also dance captain for the show.
She added: “It’s a weird story and it’s based on a true story and I just find it so radical that it actually happened.
“Rebecca is a farm girl, but I also play a show girl in Vegas, and I’m a radio singer at one point.
“Working with Catherine Tate is brilliant, she’s so lovely. She always mucks in when we’re working and sits with us trying things out and just has a laugh with everyone.”
Michelle has also appeared on the West End in Top Hat, a the Leicester Curve in Chicago and Hairspray and on a UK tour of Anything Goes, where she often filled in for the lead.
She added: “This show is really fresh and exciting and I think it’s exactly what London needs at the minute, I’m really excited to be a part of it.
“All my family are coming down and loads of my friends have got tickets already too.
“The songs are brilliant, they’re so catchy that I go to bed singing them every night. Everyone who sees the show will leave singing the songs with a smile on their face.
“It’s only on for a limited run at the St James Theatre but you never know what’s going to happen, if it’s a success maybe it’ll go to another theatre afterwards and I’d love to see that happen.
“I really love the show. The first time we had a read-through I was crying with laughter – it’s so funny.”
Miss Atomic Bomb runs from March 7 to April 9. To book tickets, go to www.stjamestheatre.co.uk