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Inez Budd (Six)

After its premiere at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2017, Six the Musical, by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, has taken the world by storm. The upbeat, concert-style show sees the six wives of Henry VIII compete to be the lead singer of their girl group, and has now had productions in Australia, Canada, the USA, and more. As Six celebrates its sixth anniversary year in London, we spoke to Inez Budd, who plays Katherine Howard, to find out more about the show’s success and her journey with it.

Q) How would you describe Six to someone who has never heard of it?

I would describe it as an all-stars pop concert. A history lesson but with a modern twist.

Q) You play Katherine Howard in the show, what do you love about this character?

How strong she is. Howie doesn’t let the tragedy she experienced in life weigh her down, if anything it’s through that, that she is able to keep her control light and bubbly. It’s a very admirable trait to have.

Q) Have you taken any inspiration from the previous performers who have played this role?

What I love about being a part of the Queendom is the freedom we have to make the queens our own, which is really exciting as a performer! When I first started previous Howards from the West End to Broadway gave me advice on how to take on the beast that is Katherine Howard, which was super helpful and very kind of them, it definitely helped

soothe my nerves!

Q) What has the fan support been like?

Amazing and I couldn’t ask for a more supportive and loving fan base. It’s so nice to be able to pour my heart and soul into something that is loved by so many people; it’s so special. They are a fiercely loyal fanbase and it’s a privilege to be a part of it.

Q) The show carries a huge message of female empowerment, why do you think this is important?

As we all know the saying ‘History repeats itself’ and even though we don’t have a tyrannical monarch, I believe these queen’s stories are, and have always been, relatable throughout the ages. Every woman can see a bit of themselves being portrayed on the stage, making it even more important to tell their stories.

Q) Did you always want to play Howard, or did you go in hoping to play a different queen?

I was just happy to be a part of the show to be honest. Interestingly enough when I auditioned for Six before, I was seen for Parr. So, I always imagined myself playing her, but it became very clear when I was asked to learn the Howard material that if I was going to be in Six, it HAD to be Katherine Howard. Something clicked.

Q) Have you taken anything from any of your previous roles to help you play Howard?

I always try to keep it fresh every role I tackle. Every character that I’ve played has all been so unique from each other.

Q) Were you a fan of Six before you were cast?

I was a huge fan of the cast album before being a part of the show. It’s always popping up on my Spotify wrapped playlist.

Q) The costumes in the show are gorgeous, what’s your favourite part about yours?

I adore the stained-glass window effect my costume has and obviously the fact that it is pink!

Q) Six is quite unique in its short show length and its concert style, do you think this is bringing a new type of audience into theatre?

Absolutely, it’s not like your traditional musical. All of the songs are based off of different pop genres and different pop star girlies. So, with that being the case, it makes theatre more accessible and makes people who otherwise wouldn’t visit the theatre, curious to visit.

Q) As well as entertaining, would you say the show is educational for people who may not know much about British history?

Totally! You’ll leave the theatre entertained whilst also being transported back to a much simpler time - sigh: GCSE history.

Q) If Howard could meet a character from another musical, who would you want it to be?

Regina George I would die! All of the pink ensembles would send Howard into a coma, or vice versa!

Q) As Six enters its sixth year, what do you think keeps audiences coming back?

Each queen brings a different type of energy and personality to the show and so there’s something relatable for everyone. We interact with our audiences, permitting a much more intimate setting than a ‘normal’ show. It’s lovely to be on a journey with the audience.

For more information and tickets, you can follow the link here.

Photography by Pamela Raith


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