Interview with Jess Daley

Jess Daley stars in the musical tour of An Officer and a Gentleman, playing the role of Lynette. I got chance to catch up with her about the role, and why she’s looking forward to heading off on tour…

What are you most looking forward to about performing in An Officer and a Gentleman?

Nothing can compare to the feeling of creating and bringing to life a brand new piece of theatre, it’s arguably every actor’s dream and something I’ve wanted to be a part of for as long as I can remember. We’ve had an incredibly creative rehearsal process so far and I’m so excited to see how much the piece evolves, especially after being involved in the initial workshop stages, back in August 2017. I’m also chuffed that I get to experience all of this with what feels like my second family – the wonderful cast and creatives. They are the bees knees!

Tell us about your character, Lynette, and what appeals to you about the role?

I had an instant connection with Lynette from the very beginning. She’s bold, determined and a free spirit, but very much a realist. Like myself, she is from a working class background. She fights very hard to break free from the dead-end life that society dictates she should be living. She’s impulsive and, as a result, maybe doesn’t make the best decisions in the moment but she also has this vulnerability that you cannot help but feel for.

Do you have a favourite tune in the musical?

I’m a mad Blondie fan so Heart of Glass is always going to be up there for me. I do, however, also have a new found love for Material Girl. If you look beneath the fun, bubblegum surface of the original track, you see just how visceral and true the lyrics are to the era.

For those who haven’t seen the film, why should musical theatre lovers get their tickets for An Officer and a Gentleman: The Musical?

I feel that there is a character in the show for everyone. There are a lot of themes within the show that are just as relevant now as they were back in the 80s. It’s also jam packed with some of the best songs ever written!

What has been your most challenging role to date and why?

I would have to say that Lynette is most definitely a big challenge for me. I’ve had to train myself vocally and physically in the lead up to the rehearsal process commencing in order to build my stamina, as it’s quite a challenging vocal track technically. It is, however, also the most fun character I’ve played so far!

See Jess Daley at Leeds Grand Theatre from 24th – 28th April!

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