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Playlist: Dusty’s Ellie Ann Lowe

First Published 12 June 2015, Last Updated 16 June 2015

It is fair to say that appearing alongside the performer you are portraying in a show is rarer than a luke warm steak. It’s even rarer when that performer has, sadly, been dead for a decade and a half.

Yet this is exactly what Ellie Ann Lowe is experiencing night after night in new musical Dusty, playing at the Charing Cross Theatre. While Lowe plays the flesh and blood Springfield, she is joined on stage by a projection of the iconic singer who, as you might expect when you have the real thing available, also performs her own songs.

This innovative new production uses music, dance, 3D technology and digital media to tell the story of Springfield’s journey from middle-class suburbanite to world famous recording artist as seen through the eyes of her friends and colleagues.

It makes for an intriguing proposition and marks the young actress’ first professional leading role.

Just three years ago, this day must have seemed a long way off for Lowe. Despite having a scholarship at the Guildford School of Acting she was struggling to cover the costs of her rent and living expenses while training. In a tale not a million miles away from that of Billy Elliot, when a newspaper local to where she grew up appealed for support, the community dug deep to help Lowe graduate with a first class degree.

To celebrate her achievement and learn a little more about the actress on the rise we asked Lowe to create a playlist of songs that would reveal what she is wishin’ and hopin’ for, and that might share a little bit of her heart with us. You can listen to the playlist at the bottom of the article. The answers are an eclectic bunch, and probably the only place you’ll find Julie Andrews sitting alongside Red Hot Chili Peppers and Black Lace next to Jacques Brel.

The song that reminds me most of my childhood…

Probably The Chain from the album Rumours by Fleetwood Mac as we used to play it a lot in the car. It reminds me of our long car journeys in the summer, when we went camping.

The song that reminds me of the time I realised I wanted to be an actor…

Anything from The Sound Of Music – I am a massive Julie Andrews fan. Give me Mary Poppins or The Sound Of Music and a box of chocolates and I am sorted…

The song that makes me happiest…

Scar Tissue by Red Hot Chili Peppers. I saw them perform at Pride Park in Derby with my brother – it was the first live gig I went to see and everyone was so happy!

The song most likely to make me cry…

Ne Me Quitte Pas sung by Jacques Brel. The lyrics are beautiful and his performance is emotionally powerful. I can see why Dusty chose to cover it as If You Go Away.

The song that reminds me most of terrifying auditions…

I Dreamed A Dream, which I sang on Les Mis recalls. Who knows, one day I might get the opportunity to play that part!

The song that reminds me of finding out I had got the lead role in Dusty…

Spooky. After the audition I fell in love with it all over again and had to add it to my iPhone playlist.

The song I am most looking forward to performing every night in the show…

Goin’ Back. The show is all about Dusty’s life and the lyrics are very meaningful.

The song that most reminds me most of my parents is…

David Phelps singing O Holy Night. Our family loves him and this song makes our Christmas so special.

The song that reminds me of falling in love…

Lucky by Jason Mraz. And that’s all you need to know…

The song I have to turn off when it comes on the radio…

Agadoo. I really don’t need to explain that do I?

The song I hope will make people think of me…

I Only Want To Be With You. To me, Dusty is saying this to everyone who comes to see the show!

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Dusty is booking at the Charing Cross Theatre until 22 August. You can book tickets through the theatre’s website.

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