If I’m being honest, Ricardo Afonso is a name that until recently, I had only ever heard mentioned to me by friends. I knew he had been in We Will Rock You as leading man Galileo and that he originated the role of Latin lothario Alberto Beddini in Top Hat, which I had seen him play so superbly on my first visit to the show.
It wasn’t until I sat down one Saturday evening earlier in the year and turned on The Voice that I realised what I had been missing. As soon as I saw Ricardo appear on my TV screen, I started kicking myself – how did I not know more about this phenomenally talented guy? He commanded the stage and totally blew me away – and I was a firm supporter of Ricardo’s throughout his (albeit brief) time on the show, and have been ever since.
I was then so honoured and privileged to not only see Ricardo perform at Scott Alan’s O2 gig in August, but also to meet him in person at the after show party – and I can honestly say he is one of the kindest souls I have ever been blessed to meet.
As a result of this meeting, I was able to sit down with Ricardo to chat about subjects including the Olympics, the importance of being Green, Jesus Christ Superstar, and his upcoming role in Thriller LIVE! Take a look . . .
Tell us a little known fact about yourself – something we wouldn’t know by looking at you!
I’ve said this a few times now because its such a happy memory, the Olympic Games handover ceremony in front of Buckingham Palace in 2008 was just thrilling. Live for the whole world to see was the entire cast of We Will Rock You opening the procedures with “We Will Rock You” and “We Are The Champions“. That was a special day.
** Apologies for the quality – but the sounds says everything! Take a look at Ricardo and the cats of WWRY performing at the Olympic Handover Ceremony! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWOflJFS2Ko (Video by qu63)**
I decided to take a big risk in 2005. I left a pretty steady and stable career in Portugal to come here, to England and try to get to the West End… At that point in my life I wanted to be a part of Musical Theatre. So I sold everything I owned. My flat, car and bike and moved here. A big gamble some might say, but my opinion is that you should always pursue your dreams and aspirations whenever it’s possible… even when it might seem impossible! I was fortunate, and things worked very well. But I was prepared for the opposite as well. Leaving my friends and family behind was the hardest thing ever, but I had to do it…
If you could play any role in any show, past or present – what would you play and why?
Yes definitely. One of the reasons for taking part in The Voice was exactly that! I still write my own music and would love to sing it live, show it to people and have it recorded. There is nothing set for now, but I’ll keep you posted.
** Watch Ricardo absolutely smash his opening audition on The Voice, performing the brilliant “Hard to Handle” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=660OyqGxAHg **
Luca, my eldest son, seems to have a taste for music, so if he ever finds my music good enough to sing to, I would love to record a duet with him. Or maybe play an instrument in it. That would be very good!
You have just become a part of the cast of Thriller Live in London. What drew you to the show?
The “Thriller Live” love affair has started a few years ago. Many different situations, on both sides – mine and the production – were never ideal. We’ve been struggling to find a scenario that works for every one, for a while now, so I am so delighted that this time, we were able to make it work. It’s a must see show in London. The energy on stage alone will make your jaw drop. It will be the best night out ever, if you like ending up dancing on your feet…
Hard to say which is my favourite as I kind of like them all equally. He was a big influence on me as a kid growing up in music.
Thriller Live is running at the Lyric Theatre, London and is also about to embark on a UK Tour. Check out http://thrillerlive.com for all the details, as well as how you can buy tickets to see the shows!
Thank you so much to Ricardo for taking the time to answer my questions – seriously folks, this guys talent is just out of this world and after listening to some of his own music over on YouTube (check out http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHtpzDGo2y8nUjmXVa4S7aQ), it is clear to see what a phenomenal talent he possesses, as well as being an absolute gentleman too! I have never seen Thriller Live before – but I will be going to see Ricardo in the show at the end of October – and my dancing shoes will be firmly on! Can’t wait! 🙂
Signing off for now
Blue Eyed Girl Xxx