Today is a more serious post than normal, but it is for a very good reason. This week, I have had life put into perspective a bit. I think it is very easy to get caught up in your own troubles, and the things that feel like the end of the world, but sometimes we just need to remember the bigger picture.
This week, has seen the launch of the campaign to raise £140,000 for life-saving treatment for Louise Plowright.
Louise is, in all senses of the phrase, a West End Star. She has performed in so many spectacular productions and has had a career that has been pretty much non-stop! She played the lead, Donna, in ‘Mamma Mia’ on the West End for 5 years; She has been in ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’, ‘Eastenders’, ‘Follies’, ‘Bad Girls – The Musical’, ‘Hot Shoe Shuffle’, ‘White Christmas’, ‘Oklahoma’, ’42nd Street’, and most recently was playing Madame Morrible in the West End production of ‘Wicked’ when the Pancreatic Cancer that she had fought off 2 years before, returned.
Now, Louise needs treatment that she can’t get in the UK to save her life. Her sister, renowned opera singer Rosalind Plowright, has started a Just Giving campaign to raise the £140,000 needed for the treatment.
Before Louise trained and became a professional performer, she used to perform in the local amateur musical theatre productions in Bristol, which is where she met my dad. They played many roles opposite each other, the favourite of which seems to be Louise’s performance of Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, with my dad playing her father, Mr Doolittle.
I met Louise when I was 14 or 15 and had an audition for my school’s production of “Grease”. My dad arranged for Lou to come over and coach me for the audition. In less than an hour she had changed my entire audition and I have never felt so confident about an audition in my life. She came back and coached me several more times, bringing new songs, warm ups, etc every time. She taught me to sing the way that I do, which is not just something that makes me incredibly happy, it has literally given me a career.
Louise inspired me to become a performer. I think I kind of idolised her from then onwards, throughout my auditions for drama school and on into this mad industry.
She taught me to sing, properly, and there aren’t words for how much that means to me.
Now Lou needs all the help she can get to pay for this treatment. Obviously, I have donated, but I wanted to post the link and explain a bit about it on my little corner of the internet, just to do my bit. She is an incredible woman, and she deserves this chance.
I know that in this economic climate, money is hardly free-flowing or growing on trees, but if you happen to find a fiver in your jeans before you wash them and feel like donating to this incredible cause, I know it would be so much to me, to everyone close to her, her family, and of course Lou herself – every penny counts.
The link to donate is: https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/louiseplowright
I am also involved in organising a fundraising concert of West End theatre performers so I will be posting details of that on here and on my social media, and if you live in London (or don’t mind hopping on the train) and feel like coming along for what, already, is going to be an incredible night, I would love to meet you guys and see you there!
I will be back to my normal blogging & talking my usual drivel tomorrow, but sometimes something happens that is a little bit more important than gossip or pictures of what you had for dinner, and I wanted to post it on here. 🙂