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Tell us In 10 – Rebecca McKinnis

Tell Us In 10: Rebecca McKinnis

Hira Desai

By Hira Desai First Published 26 October 2021, Last Updated 29 October 2021

In our profile series, Tell Us In 10, we ask cast members and creatives of top London shows to tell us all about themselves in just 10 questions.

This week, we’re talking to Rebecca McKinnis who plays Heidi Hansen in the Olivier Award-winning musical Dear Evan Hansen which is officially #BackOnStage at the Nöel Coward Theatre. Rebecca is no stranger to the West End, having played Margaret in Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, Killer Queen in We Will Rock You and Donna/Tanya in Mamma Mia! She’s also starred in Disney’s Beauty And The Beast (movie) and in the Sound Of Music Live (ITV).

Dear Evan Hansen is a heart-warming story of love and acceptance which has touched the hearts of theatre fans across the globe. In the musical, Rebecca plays a single, overworked mother. Her son Evan (played by Sam Tutty) struggles to make a connection with those around him and cannot find a sense of purpose. But after the death of one of his classmates, he gets a chance for the one thing he’s always wanted: to finally fit in.

Find out more about Rebecca in our Tell Us In 10…

 

1. My route into theatre was…

A decision I made quite late on… My parents made me do my exams before letting me go to drama school… 2 actually… a year course at Italia Conti and then the 3 year course at Mountview.

2. My West End idol is…

Josie Walker…I’d love to follow her career path to do amazing plays and film and tv -she’s a phenomenal talent.

Josie Walker, John McCrea and Mina Anwar in Everybody’s Talking About Jamie at Apollo Theatre. Photo by Johan Persson

3. My colleagues would describe me as…

A bit scatty… but hopefully professional and passionate….and fun too…I like to laugh.

Lauren Ward and Rebecca McKinnis in Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre. Photo by Matthew Murphy.

4. My favourite show present or past (that isn’t one I star in/work on) is…

I’ve got to say…I love Six…the voices on those girls are wild and my daughter loves it too.

The cast of Six at West End LIVE 2021 (Credit: Pamela Raith Photography)The cast of Six at West End LIVE 2021. Photo by Pamela Raith Photography

5. The career moment I’m most proud of is…

Singing He’s My Boy in Jamie every night…it was a honour and I just loved it. And of course, landing the role of Heidi…that was the biggest ‘pinch me’ moment of my career.

John McCrea and Rebecca McKinis in Everybody's Talking About Jamie (Photo: Alastair Muir)John McCrea and Rebecca McKinis in Everybody’s Talking About Jamie. Photo by Alastair Muir

6. The hardest part about my job/role is…

Having to look at Sam Tutty’s face all night!! I’m KIDDING of course -he’s a beautiful soul! Maybe navigating my voice around emotional scenes to then have to sing the songs…it’s a tricky one… Emotion does all sorts to your singing voice. If you’ve ever tried to sing when you’re nervous you’ll know what I mean.

Sam Tutty in Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre. Photo by Matthew MurphySam Tutty in Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre. Photo by Matthew Murphy

7. If I wasn’t an actor I would be…

Very sad. I absolutely love what I do…I’ve always fancied working in advertising though… don’t ask me why?!

 

8. Something people don’t know about me is…

I grew up in Scotland. You’d never know to talk to me because I lost any accent but I can still bring it out when I need it.

Sam Tutty and Rebecca McKinnis in technical rehearsals for Dear Evan Hansen. Photo by Liza Heinrichs

9. The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given is…

Like yourself. Love yourself and really really try your hardest not to care too much about what others think..at the end of the day we’ve all just got us and us every step in life so making friends with yourself and being kind and compassionate to yourself is so important.

 

10. The one thing I wish I could tell my younger self is…

Be yourself. Yourself is great and unique and it’s ok not to follow the crowd. Stop worrying about not being able to belt songs like other people or comparing yourself to others in any way… keep working hard and be grateful for every moment on stage…you’ll get there.

 

If the above has left you wanting to learn more, check out the show’s West End LIVE debut performance from Sam Tutty and Lucy Anderson which is sure to give you ALL the feels.

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Whether you’re looking to tick off a major West End musical off your list or want to enjoy a show with your loved ones to is sure to be a memorable one, book your tickets to see Dear Evan Hansen below.

Tagged:
dear evan hansen Noel Coward Theatre rebecca mckinnis

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