A former Nailsea School student has landed a starring role in the new Live Aid musical Just For One Day which opens at the Old Vic in London in the New Year.
Hope Kenna, aged 24, pictured, lives in Locking and after GCSEs and A-levels at Nailsea went on to train in acting at Guildhall School of Music.
As well as acting Hope who graduated in 2020-21 is a talented dancer and singer.
She will be playing the role of young Suzanne, alongside Jackie Clune (Motherland) who will portray the mature version of the same character.
Hope has been collaborating in the creation of the show for two years.
She said: “Having Bob Geldof in the room with us, has made this an exceptional experience.
“His input sets the event in context and of course the music is phenomenal.”
The show was devised and directed by Luke Sheppard.
The actual Live Aid concert masterminded by Geldof and fellow rock ‘n’ roller Midge Ure was staged in July 1985 long before Hope was born.
It was devised to raise funds and awareness for the famine crisis then taking place in Ethiopia.
Nailsea staged its own fundraising version later that year with 30 local bands on stage in Somerset Square.
The UK leg of Live Aid at Wembley Stadium starred Queen with frontman Freddie Mercury, David Bowie, Elton John, George Michael, Sting, Sade, The Who, Paul McCartney, U2, Geldof’s the Boomtown Rats, Ure, Paul Weller and tons of others rocked and raved in the presence of thousands of spectators — including Charles and Diana, then known as the Prince and Princess of Wales.
Across the pond at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia, Mick Jagger sang with Tina Turner; Madonna, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Hall & Oates and others also performed.
Led Zeppelin re-formed for the occasion; Phil Collins played at Wembley then boarded the Concorde so he could play drums with Zeppelin, replacing the group’s late drummer John Bonham.
Many of the songs performed that day will be included in Just For One Day.
Just For One Day new musical
Just For One Day will run at the Old Vic from Friday to Saturday, January 26-March 30.
In a media interview we learned Geldof will be a character in the show ‘but it’s not done in a kind of Stars in Their Eyes way. It’s not people dressing up as the artists and doing it as a tribute — we’ve moved very far away from that.’
Actor Craige Els (Doctor Who, R.I.P.D. 2: Rise of the Damned, National Theatre Live: Antigone) takes on the Bob Geldof character.
Another key role will be performed by Naomi Katiyo, who has appeared in UK productions of musicals Treason, Ain’t Too Proud and What’s New Pussycat.
Geldof has also aided the production concerning music rights to some of the hits performed at Live Aid.
Online tickets will be on sale soon here https://www.oldvictheatre.com/stage/event/just-for-one-day
Hope has another big role next year when in the summer she will be one of five bridesmaids at the wedding of former Nailsea School pupil and best friend Gemma Hill.
Gemma who is marrying another school classmate. Ben Thompson.