Caro Meets Musicals & Opera Interview

Chloe Hart: Fantastically Great Women Who Changed The World

By | Published on Monday 27 November 2023

Coming up this week at the New Wimbledon Theatre is a short run from touring show ‘Fantastically Great Women Who Changed The World’, the acclaimed musical based on the popular book by Kate Pankhurst. 

The show sees schoolgirl Jade coming face to face with iconic women of the past and features a fab line up of experienced musical types. 

To find out more about it, I spoke to performer Chloe Hart, who you may well have seen treading the boards of the West End in shows like ‘Hairspray’ and on tour with the likes of ‘Six’.  

CM: Can you start by telling us a bit about ‘Fantastically Great Women Who Changed The World’? Whose stories does it tell?
CH: Our show celebrates the lives and achievements of some of the amazing women throughout history who have made significant changes to the world we live in. We tell the stories of Rosa Parks, Jane Austen, Emmeline Pankhurst and Frieda Kahlo, to name just a few.

CM: What themes are explored through the show? Does it have a message?
CH: The show explores very important themes, arguably the biggest being the prejudice experienced by women from history and what they faced. It does however celebrate what they did in spite of that, meaning there is definitely a theme of female empowerment throughout the piece. 

CM: What is the music like? How would you describe it in terms of a genre?
CH: Our amazing composers Miranda Cooper and Jennifer Decilveo have composed an incredible pop musical theatre score and it is incredibly varied in terms of style.

CM: Can you tell us a bit more about your role in it?
CH: I have the honour of playing three amazing women from history. Author Jane Austen, Olympic gold medalist and first woman to swim the Channel Gertrude Ederle, and Dorset-born palaeontologist Mary Anning. All three characters have different accents, which has been a challenge!

CM: Can you tell us a bit about your fellow cast members and what they do?
CH: We are a cast of seven and a band of three, and the people I work with are all so talented! Jennifer Caldwell, Leah Vassell and Elena Breschi all join me as the other Fantastically Great Women.

Georgia Grant-Anderson plays schoolgirl Jade, and we have two fabulous swings, Summer Priest and Rachel Seiran, and they have to cover all tracks in the show! Actual superheroes!

CM: Who is the show aimed at? Who is it suitable for?
CH: I would say that anyone would enjoy this show and the message is definitely important for everyone. It is definitely something that children would especially love, with some of the more upbeat and comedy scenes and songs. A family show for sure!

CM: Can you tell us a bit about yourself? How did you come to be a performer? Was this always what you wanted to do?
CH: So I’ve been working in musical theatre for nearly fifteen years and it’s definitely always something I wanted to do.

My dad is a musician and I was always singing as a child, so once I discovered musicals I was sold! I feel very fortunate to have had the career I have and have been part of some wonderful shows over the years.

In the West End I’ve appeared in ‘Hairspray’ as Tracy Turnblad, ‘Wicked’, ‘Les Misérables’ and ‘Kinky Boots’. I’ve also toured with shows and worked regionally, most recently as Catherine Of Aragon in ‘Six The Musical’. 

CM: What have been the highlights of your working life thus far?
CH: I always get asked this question and I find it really hard to answer, but at the moment, I’ve still got a huge soft spot for ‘Six’. It really came into my life at the right time and I enjoyed every single minute. I loved playing Catherine Of Aragon and I’d love to revisit her one day!

CM: What aims and ambitions do you have for the future?
CH: I would love to continue performing, but I’d also be interested in working as a director! And outside of theatre, I would really love to become a mum in the next few years! 

CM: What’s coming up next for you after this?
CH: We’ve only just started this job so I tend not to plan too far in advance so I can live in the moment… so who knows?! 

‘Fantastically Great Women Who Changed The World’ is on at the New Wimbledon Theatre from 30 Nov-2 Dec. See this page here to book your tickets.

LINKS: new-wimbledon-theatre | 

Photo: Pamela Raith