INTERVIEW: Boogie On Up With Bonnie and The Bonnettes!

Last week marked exactly a year since the UK went into the lockdown, and whilst there is light starting to be revealed at the end of the tunnel there is still so much more fun to look for online to give you a bit of a cheer. This morning we talk to Cameron, Hattie and Rebecca or Bonnie and the Bonnettes who are releasing a series of music videos between March to June. The aim of the videos is create a pick me up for everyone, so I had to find out more!

Hello there tell us a little bit about yourself!

We are Bonnie and The Bonnettes! Made up of Cameron Sharp, Hattie Eason, and Rebecca Glendenning, we are a theatre company and drag trio based in Newcastle. We love it when audiences laugh, we love it when they think, and we really love it when they do both at the same time! 

Tell us all about the project that you are bringing to the online world at the moment?

We are launching our first digital project this month – a series called Boogie On Up

Boogie On Up is a series of 8 music videos, launched on the 14th and 26th of each month, March-June 2021! Each video is designed to be a little party just for you, on your lunch, in your home office, wherever you are! 

We want to put a smile on people’s faces. Everyone needs a pick me up right now and that’s exactly what we want to give them!

What times does it run throughout the day?

They’ll be launched during the day on their release days and then they’re yours to enjoy! Because they’re on YouTube there’s no need to buy a ticket or plan ahead for a night in, we’re yours on demand! 

How much does it cost , what platform etc?

Completely free for everyone to enjoy! The aim is to bring joy, and you can’t put a price on that.

Our first 4 videos will be shared through Live Theatre’s social media platforms with the second lot of 4 videos being shared through Northern Stage’s social media platforms. They’ll be available to watch on YouTube.

How was the project formed?

During covid and lockdown we had a moment to reflect on who we are as a company and what we want to do going forward. One of the big things that came out of that is that we want to create little pockets of joy and celebration wherever we go! Right now, we can’t perform live, or go many places at all. So we decided to create a fun, digestible, mini series that can be streamed right to you wherever you are! We wanted each video to be something a little different from the last, so there’s something for everyone.

How do you rehearse for an online show?

It’s had its challenges for sure but it’s been immensely rewarding! 

We’ve had to put a lot of safety measures in place for covid, you’ll be able to see us modelling some fetching glittery face masks, and our videographer TJMov has done some very clever editing so make it as close as possible to what we’re able to offer in a live show. 

With everything happening in the world at the moment, why is it so important to have activities like yours available?

Life at the moment is very stressful for everyone. Whether you’re working from home, homeschooling, on furlough, or a key worker, we all need a chance to get on up and shake the blues away with a dance and a giggle, or just to have a break for a few minutes in the day to watch something fun and glittery! 

We’ve tried really hard to make sure there’s something different in every video so there’s something for everyone.It’s a chance for a break at a time where we all need one. 

What are three things you have learnt about adapting to making shows for online?

Online shows can be a lot more accessible than live performance, for a number of reasons, and we think making these videos, which will be captioned and BSL interpreted as well as being free and easily accessible, has taught us a lot about what we want to offer people when live performances can go ahead. Those are big and important lessons to learn, and we’re really excited about how we offer accessibility in the future. 

Even when shows are back in theatres in the future will you be considering doing any more online content? 

We think, like a lot of performers Covid has forced us to consider new ways to connect with our audiences, and what we’ve realised is we’re able to offer really accessible, fun content that a lot of people will be able to engage in. It’s become a real strength and a way to reach people on a larger scale than we normally would! Obviously we love performing live, but I don’t think we’ll rule out online content going forward.

What can people expect over the next few weeks from your project?

Lots of music to make you want to boogie, fun dance routines, some confetti, and a lot of fun! 

The release of each video will be announced by Live Theatre for the March and April videos, and Northern Stage for the May and June installments, we’ll then announce them on our social media and they’ll be yours to watch and rewatch as much as you like! 

We’ll be releasing some behind the scenes shots too to let you in on how things look off camera! 

If people want to find out more about you on social media where shall they visit?

Find us at our website

Instagram: BonnieandtheBonnettes

Facebook and Twitter: BonnieBonnettes

Remember to share your dancing with us using the hashtag #BoogieOnUp

Finally why should people get invovled?

Life is hard for a lot of us right now, and we think everyone deserves a little 3 minute pocket of joy to help ease these troubling times. We want everyone to have a moment to shake away those lockdown blues with a good old boogie! Let’s have one big party! 

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