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When you think of Antony Costa, you may think immediately of Blue, one of the most British popular boy bands of the early 21st century. But he has also established himself a successful career in theatre, having performed in such shows as Blood Brother and Boogie Nights, and he's back on stage for Save The Last Dance For Me, which comes to the Liverpool Empire Theatre next month. We spoke to Antony about his current theatre tour, as well as key events for him in music and television.
First of all, tell us about the upcoming show Save The Last Dance For Me.
Save The Last Dance is a 60s jukebox musical with a love story. There are some fantastic songs, written by two songwriters called Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman; they wrote songs like A Teenager In Love, Viva Las Vegas and the iconic song Save The Last Dance For Me. It's a lovely musical that's very uplifting with a great love story.
Describe your Milton character in the show.
Milton is very much a ladies' man, a bit of a wheeler and dealer. He's an American Air Force guy; wherever he was based, the first thing he would do is to go out and try to meet girls and have a party etc. That's what he does! Also, Milton introduces Marie (played by Elizabeth Carter) to Curtis (played by Wayne Robinson), whose character is my best friend, and from there Marie and Curtis fall in love, and it's about their journey - do they or don't they?
Are there any differences from a performer standpoint between playing for a theatre audience and playing for a pop audience?
I think the theatre audience are there to see the show, which is great because you're part of an amazing show, whereas if a pop audience have paid to see, say, Blue, then they're specifically paid to see you if you know what I mean. But I think that's the only difference between the audiences really. Both are fantastic, by the way; I love performing, and I'll always cherish any sort of performing that I can do. So, it just depends on what you're doing really. I know that every audience that we've had for this show so far this year have been different, and they've all been great.
You rose to fame as a member of Blue with Simon Webbe, Duncan James and Lee Ryan. How did the group originally form, and when did you feel that Blue had truly made it?
Well, we formed in the year 2000, we had all become friends through auditions and different situations like that, so really we just became mates and from there Blue formed. Then, in 2001, we released All Rise, and it all happened from there for us.
How did you find the experience of participating in I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here in 2005?
It was amazing. A really, really good experience. It's an experience that I'll never forget and that I'll always cherish. It was hard, I'm not gonna lie, but it was really enjoyable!
Tell us about how Blue reformed in 2011 prior to competing in the Eurovision Song Contest.
It was brilliant to get the group back together. You know, to represent your country, in any field I suppose. It's fantastic to be able to represent the country in something that we love doing, which for us is singing. We really enjoyed the experience. It was hard work, but enjoyable.
Finally, what can the Liverpool audience expect from Save The Last Dance For Me?
What they can expect is an uplifting show with great music. We want them up dancing from the start singing along, having fun, leaving their troubles outside and going home with a smile on their faces.
Save The Last Dance For Me plays the Liverpool Empire from Monday June 6 to Saturday June 11. To book your tickets, click here.
For more information about Save The Last Dance For Me, click here.