Charlotte Wakefield to star in Manchester production of Mamma Mia

PUBLISHED: 01:16 23 April 2011 | UPDATED: 19:15 20 February 2013

Sara Poyzer as Donna and Charlotte Wakefield as Sophie

Sara Poyzer as Donna and Charlotte Wakefield as Sophie

Former Knutsford schoolgirl is making Swede music in her latest role Photography by Brinkhoff/Mögenburg

Charlotte Wakefield admits that she has had a charmed career. Not yet 21, she has worked in films and television, been nominated for an Olivier award, and has worked in experimental new genre with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

And the former Knutsford High School pupil has now landed one of the lead roles in the hit musical Mamma Mia - not bad for someone with no formal theatrical training.

Im such an Abba fan, so this is a dream for me, she said. The rehearsals have been really good fun and Im really looking forward to it.
Charlotte started her career with weekend drama classes at Stagecoach and was quickly jettisoned into the big time with her first film role, in An Angel For May, coming when she was just 10-years-old.

I did start early, but I guess it was in the family, Charlotte added. My gran was in the Halle choir and my mum went to drama school, although she didnt pursue it as a career. At that age I knew I was very lucky but it took until I was about 15 to realise exactly what had happened.

I have been very fortunate in my career so far. I havent been to drama school and I have learned on the job. I have always had a lot of support from my family and friends, but I have seen my fair share of jealousy and bullying. I am a strong person though, and Ive never boasted about what I do. I understand that people are interested and try to always be honest and to tell people if they ask.

Charlotte is part of a new generation of actors who connect with their fans through social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook and she has a YouTube channel where she posts videos and answers viewers questions.

Since her early film role Charlotte has appeared in television programmes The Royal, Occupation, Waterloo Road and Holby City. She made her West End debut in Spring Awakening for which she received a nomination for Best Actress In A Musical at the 2010 Laurence Olivier awards and was part of the RSC production of Such Tweet Sorrow - a high tech re-telling of Romeo and Juliet.

I am a Twitter addict so the role was perfect for me. I use it all the
time to connect with people and to keep in touch, she said. And to be nominated for an Olivier award at the age of 19, alongside some of the biggest names in musical theatre, was just ridiculous.

Charlotte, who was given her first Abba cd at the age of six, is now hoping for more plaudits for Mamma Mia, which runs at Manchesters Palace Theatre form April 26th-June 18th.

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