Danny loves the reality of touring with Grease

Carina Gillespie and Danny Bayne
Carina Gillespie and Danny Bayne

THEY say never go back, but luckily Danny Bayne ignored what ‘they’ say to reprise his role as all-singing all-dancing Danny Zuko in hit musical Grease.

Danny starred in the West End production for two years after winning ITV’s Grease Is The Word, and, after a short break, he is now back as part of the touring cast.

The T Birds and Pink Ladies will hit the stage at the Waterside Theatre next month.

“I actually enjoy it more now than I did when it was in the West End,” said Danny.

“The cast and crew are really friendly and touring makes everyone closer together, more like a family.”

Grease first appeared on Broadway in 1972, six years before the iconic film starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton John was released.

The current production opened in the West End in 1993 and ran for six years before returning in July 2007.

So why does the star of the show think a musical set in the 1950s is still so popular?

“The music is timeless and never gets old, and the choreography is fantastic,” he said.

“It’s so fast paced on stage it really seems to fly by, you don’t even have time to notice how tired you are from all the dancing!

“But the audience really make the show. They always know what they are going to see as it’s so iconic, and if they are having a good time we have a good time on stage.”

The role as Danny Zuko was Danny’s first after leaving the Italia Conti drama school, and he credits reality show Grease Is The Word for kickstarting his career.

“It was terrific for me. A lot of people slate the TV shows but I don’t, I think they have value.

“I’ve been doing this since I was eight so it was always the career I was headed for anyway, but the TV show gave me a real boost.”

Danny is also a fan of the biggest reality show of them all – X Factor.

“The music industry seems to be dying, with illegal downloads and fewer people actually paying for music,” he said.

“But X Factor brings music to a younger audience and people go out and buy the records rather than downloading them for free, even if you and I aren’t necessarily fans of the artists.

“With my reality show, it brought people into the theatre and any way to boost the audiences is good in my opinion.”

Danny is also familiar with the stars of BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing having met many of the professional dancers while competing in Latin American dance contests.

In his previous life as a dancer, Danny was British Champion in freestyle, hip hop and rock‘n’roll and came third in Latin American at the Italian World Championships.

“It’s a very tough sport, I had to train for three and a half hours each day after drama college. It was tough but so worth it.

“I got to meet all the fantastic dancers that you see on Strictly and travelled all over the world.”

Danny’s current tour with Grease brings him to the Waterside Theatre from Monday to Saturday, October 10 to 15.

For tickets call 0844 871 7607 or visit www.atgtickets.com/aylesbury