An aspiring young actor from Beanhill is making his professional debut in Motown the Musical at Milton Keynes theatre this week.
Michael Jeremiah is playing one of The Temptations in the hit show, which opened yesterday and runs until Saturday August 3.
As youngster he performed in the theatre's Stage Experience youth musical theatre productions - though he dreamed of being a footballer.
Michael said: " I went to MK South Sixth Form College. But I was studying football at the same time as doing the academic stuff and I didn’t leave with any good qualifications. So I went back to MK Academy to study performing arts."
After auditioning for Stage Experience, he was given a lead part. Then the same happened when he auditioned for RARE production company.
"In 2014 one of my B-Tech drama teachers persuaded me to apply for drama school. I didn’t even know that those schools existed. I was just enjoying performing at school and stuff! " he said.
Michael went to a careers event in london and spotted a stall run by the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.
"They were one of the few places that didn’t require a certain level of dance ability or being able to read music. I was a complete novice - I’d had no dance training, I couldn’t read music and had only minimal acting training," he said.
"I spoke to Matthew Turnbull, one of the staff members at Mountview, and said ‘If I audition, can I play something I’ve written myself and just come and be me?’ And he said, absolutely, we’re not looking for a polished performance. "Three days after that audition I heard that I’d got a place there. It was really emotional."
Michael said his family will all be watching him perform in Motown.
"I’ve got family from Northampton, from London and of course from Beanhill all coming to see the show. I’m playing one of The Temptations and one of my favourite numbers is My Girl. It’s not just the music but the whole number is an experience.
"From the costumes, to the wig that I have on, I feel like the greatest person in the world in that number."
The cast for the UK and Ireland tour includes Edward Baruwa who plays the leading role of ‘Berry Gordy’, Karis Anderson as ‘Diana Ross’, Nathan Lewis as ‘Smokey Robinson’ and Shak Gabbidon-Williams as ‘Marvin Gaye’.
Motown the Musical is at Milton Keynes Theatre, Tuesday, 23 July to Saturday, 3 August. To book seats click here