Ben Pryer Interview

Musician, Singer, Songwriter, Producer and now he's adding acting to his bow. Is there anything Ben Pryer can't do?

Ben is currently part of the 30th Anniversary UK tour of Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (which we recently gave a glowing 5-star review - read it here). He plays singer Richie Vallens in the show and he sat down and answered some questions for us.
Ben Pryer.
Q: Congratulations on your part of Richie Vallens in the Buddy Holly Story. How have you found the experience so far?
A: It’s such an honour to be a part of this legendary show. It’s so well known all over the world and that just adds to the excitement I feel each show! Every day has been just as thrilling as the last and I put that down to how brilliant this show really is.

Q: The show is celebrating 30th anniversary with this tour. Why do you think the show has lasted and still packs out theatres?
A: 30 years and still going strong! This musical really stands the test of time and I believe it’s because of the man himself, Buddy Holly. His music has touched so many people the world over and still continues to today. I’ve never seen anything like the audiences that come and see the show, it’s like a hysteria of sorts takes over everyone and they just want to keep dancing all night!

Q: Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Richie Valens all died fairly young in the aeroplane crash that claimed their lives yet they left quite the legacy and back catalogue. What are your favourite numbers of Buddy/Big Bopper/Richie?
A: I still get upset thinking about how young they all died. I often think about how they would’ve continued to change music through their lifetimes and how it would’ve impacted others. I love to listen to ‘Ooh my head’ by Ritchie, It always makes me want to dance! And of course, raining in my heart by Buddy. Absolutely beautiful.

Q: As Richie Valens in the show, you get to perform his biggest hit La Bamba. Is it a joy to get to perform this number?
A: Performing La Bamba is such an honour. It’s such a recognisable song - everyone knows it! Whether the audience is young or old, they will have heard it (and danced to it!) at some point. It gives me so much to play with both as a musician and an actor which is so fulfilling. It’s great!

Ben (right) as Richie Vallens with Christopher Weeks as Buddy Holly and
Joshua Barton (The Big Bopper) in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story
Q: You're obviously quite an accomplished musician but now you're adding acting to your CV. What roles would you like to play in the future?
A: Thank you! Yes, I’ve been a professional musician for a while now but I always wanted to go into acting, and this couldn’t be a better start for me! I’m a huge nerd at heart and love a lot of sci-fi and fantasy, so I’d love to do something like that in the future! But I’ll always be a musician also!

Q: You specialise in similar music styles to that of Buddy/Richie in your own work. Is it your favourite genre to play/listen to?
A: 50s and 60s music has always spoken to me on a different level and I’ve always felt a particular connection to these eras of music. I absolutely adore performing ballads from the 50s and 60s and of course the upbeat numbers too! I’m a fan of a lot of genres and listen to a good mix daily, but rock n roll will always be in my heart!

Q: You've released a couple of albums (Ben Pryer - 2017 and An Audience With Ben Pryer and the Lucky Dogs - 2019) are you hoping to release more in the future?
A: Yes for sure! I love to write and record my own music and that will be something I’d look to when I’m home.

Ben continues in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story visit https://www.buddythemusical.com/ for dates and tickets. To find out more about Ben and his music visit his website https://www.benpryer.com/

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