AMERICAN actor Bradley Frenette has taken his first job outside the United States and it’s brought him to Bournemouth - in January.
He’s appearing as the music-loving King Julien in the stage show Madagascar Live! - which has given the animated film series a new lease of life.
With the show set to arrive at the LG Arena this weekend, the Solihull News grabbed some time with Bradley to talk about his right royal role.
“It was such an appealing show, so colourful and it looked so much fun to do,” says the 22-year-old. “How could I turn it down? The costumes are pretty elaborate, but when the show’s finished, everybody is absolutely drenched from head to toe in sweat. You just have to take care of your body, keep in shape and do your stretches and you’ll be okay.”
Playing a party-mad lemur is quite a departure from his last role, in the blood-drenched Stephen Sondheim musical Sweeney Todd. But no sooner had he bid farewell to drizzly England on the stage, he was heading over here for real to appear in Madagascar.
“I’ve based myself in New York but really since I graduated from college I’ve been living out of a suitcase - travelling all around America. This is my first job away from home but really it feels like a vacation with a bit of work. I’ve been overwhelmed by how friendly everyone is.”
With his time on stage spent under a blazing sun - or at least spotlights - I suspect the damp weather away from the theatre is a bit of a shock.
“Actually I’m from Detroit [in Michigan] so this is pretty mild for me,” laughs Bradley. “Detroit is really a centre for the motor industry - though it’s almost filed for bankruptcy- and both my parents are engineers. I think my mom and dad would have preferred me to be a doctor or a lawyer, but I always wanted to do something artistic.”
And would he be keen to come back to England after this tour’s done? “Oh in a second, I’ve absolutely loved it so far.”
Madagascar Live! is on at the LG Arena from January 18-20. Tickets are available on 0844 338 8000.