West End Les Misérables star takes to the stage on Britain’s Got Talent

A West End star took to the stage of Britain’s Got Talent tonight as part of an inspirational choir.

Les Misérables actor Paul Wilkins appeared in Thursday’s live semi-final in The Frontline Singers.

The pandemic was a difficult time for those working in the hospitality and entertainment worlds and Paul was quick to offer a helping hand after his performing career was put on pause.

“As the hospitality and educational sector began to close, the options for freelance/part-time work to support my career were practically none,” he shared ahead of the performance on BGT. “It was at this sobering point that we needed to seek work that would be safe from closure and more importantly from Covid-19 itself.

“I drove to my local supermarket and requested positions for me and my girlfriend – I didn’t care what job it was, I just knew that it was important we had something. There and then, and to the manager’s credit, I was offered an on-the-spot interview for us both to start work in 2 days’ time. As the daytime shifts were filling up quickly, we made the joint decision that night shifts (10pm – 7am) would be the best option.”

Paul worked there restocking shelves and safely getting through the pandemic. During this time, Paul’s friends James Beeny and Gina Georgio wrote a beautiful song titled Strange Old World and, soon after writing it, they asked Paul to join many other key workers to create a remote recording in aid of NHS charities.

He had no idea what the finished result would be like and was staggered when the video was published on YouTube. Seeing himself alongside some of the most courageous human beings, fighting through the pandemic, he felt inspired.

Although performing for a living, being part of The Frontline Singers and singing on Britain’s Got Talent, is a very different sensation.

Paul continues, “The Frontline Singers are a group who sang to bring joy to their loved ones and people across the nation during one of the darkest times we have ever known.

“Of course, I perform for a living but, being part of The Frontline Singers is something entirely different – I am there to support them, and it is an honour. It is also a privilege to perform beside fellow national and West-End actors Thérèse O’Sullivan (Elf: The Musical), Devon Elise Johnson (Half A Sixpence) and Sam O’Rourke (Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Half A Sixpence) – each worked in a key worker role during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

As well as his appearance Les Misérables, Paul recently originated the role of Reggie in an original British musical called The Dreamers and toured in Hair in the role of Claude Bukowski.

For more on The Frontline Singers, visit www.toysoldierproductions.com/productions/thefrontlinesingers

About the author: Josh Darvill

Josh is Stageberry's editor with over five years of experience writing about theatre in the West End and across the UK. Prior to following his passion for musicals, he worked for more than a decade as a TV journalist.


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