Having danced for 17 years, bright and bubbly Evie seems to be a Jack-of-all-trades when it comes down to it.
Ballet, tap, jazz, modern and acro are just a few dance styles she performs and studies at the Phil Winston’s Theatreworks where she also takes singing and acting classes.
Although not yet in her 20s, Evie has performed for many professional dancers and choreographers at the Carl Allen Awards at Manchester Central and has also performed in shows starring the likes of Paloma Faith, Ella Henderson and Jack Pack.
It doesn’t stop there. Nowhere near shy of the stage, Evie has performed in a series of musicals ran by David Hasselhoff called Last Night a DJ Saved My life.
Living a very hectic lifestyle, there seems to be success after success for the hopeful and determined dancer.
She thanks her dance college for these opportunities they have given her and claims:”I wouldn’t be anywhere near my dream without Phil’s. I take every opportunity I get.”
We got comfy in her immaculate room with walls filled with dance posters and framed achievement certificates and she told all about what it is like to be a dancer.
Now being part of a major performer’s college, how did you work your way up to this?
”I have danced at so many dance schools throughout my life which have taught me all I need to know. The raw talent is what you need to get into these kind of places, without sounding big headed but all I can say is you need to be good enough or they won’t have you, which is a huge load of pressure.
“My family have been so supportive and helped me along the way. With these kind of schools there is no funding you are expected to pay for the tuition out of your own pocket. Luckily I was nominated for a scholarship but my parents still have to pay a lot of my fees to get me where I am, which I’m so thankful for.”
You mention your family, would you say they are your biggest supporters?
”Definitely. They have been so great and have been to every show they are able to and it’s always nice knowing they are in the audience.
“My partner Andy is also so supportive no matter what and that’s amazing to know as sometimes I do have to perform things that can make him uncomfortable. There was a time where I had been offered a job dancing in a cage in a nightclub wearing not the most covering outfit, which did end up in a little bit of a spat, so I ended up turning the chance down. I don’t mind compromising because I realise it can be hard on him sometimes looking from his point of view.”
What would you consider as your proudest moment?
Gazing at the ceiling with big brown eyes she is thinking hard about this one.
”Hmmm.. that’s a hard one. I was so proud of myself getting into Phil’s last year and getting nominated for the ballet scholarship, it has been the best experience of my life so far.
“I was also really proud of myself when I was chosen to perform in front of Paloma Faith, I love her so it was such a privilege. I audition for all these kinds of opportunities so I guess I’m always over the moon whenever I qualify for them.”
How do you deal with living away from home so often with all the opportunities you take?
”Well I already live in Blackpool three days a week, so it usually just means I’ll be away for an extra few days. My family don’t mind and sometimes use it as an excuse for a night away. [laughs] But yeah I like being on the road.
“I have been offered a job in Belgium next year as a showgirl, my favourite. So that will mean I will be away for a little while. I don’t know for definite how long yet but I can’t wait. It’ll be amazing.”
You seem very motivated… What would you say motivates you the most?
”Can we say ‘who’ rather than ‘what’ [laughs]. A family friend Chris has been so helpful with my dancing, always helping me get glammed up for my shows since I can remember. Before every show she tells me her little motto ‘Give it rock all’, so that’s my biggest motivation on stage.
“I used to look up to the older girls at my old dance school when I was younger and always want to be like them. Now I am in their shoes it feels so good.”
It all seems to be plain sailing, have you ever had any set-backs?
”I have suffered with heart problems since I was born. I was rushed into hospital not too long ago during one of my rehearsals because my heart flared up. It kind of flutters really fast and makes me panicky and dizzy. So that set me back from a rehearsal but I’m back dancing again now I just have to be aware it can happen at any time.
“Doctors have also told me in the past that I shouldn’t dance because I have scoliosis, like a curve in the spine that can be made worse through vigorous exercise. Dance is my only passion so I don’t care if I’m a cripple by the age of 30, as long as I’ve had a good dance career.”
It must be important for you to relax, what is your ideal day off?
”Ahhhh my ideal day off, not that I get many. I love to have a nice lie in in my own bed, sometimes I don’t get up until lunch time. Then I enjoy days out with Andy [partner] or friends and family. I like spending it with people I don’t see when I’m away for dance. Then I would come home, have a nice long soak in the bath to cure all my sore muscles and get an early night ready for travelling back to Blackpool the next day.”
What would be your dream career?
Smiling to herself, she is thinking about her future, after a long pause she finally speaks…
”Sorry [laughs] I got carried away thinking about it. My dream career is the career I have planned for myself, I like think I can achieve it.
“I did originally want to dance on cruise ships, but that would mean being away from my partner and my family for up to nine months at a time. I am a qualified Acro dance teacher already so I would absolutely love to open my own dance school and give young dancers the fantastic opportunities I have had by being able to dance – that would be so rewarding. I can’t stop smiling just thinking about it. So yeah, that’s my plan.”
Do you think you will achieve that one day?
”I hope so. It is so hard being a dancer and there is more to it than what meets the eye.
“At Phil’s we are given a diet plan of foods we can and can’t eat so we’re getting the right stuff in our bodies and to maintain a healthy weight. We are told we shouldn’t drink alcohol also so a girly night with my mates can’t be a glass of wine over a takeaway, those days have stopped for me. If I stick to this and all through the intense training I will be good enough to fulfil my career, I am so determined so I’m confident that I will do it one day’’.