Gabrielle Reilly: How did you balance starring as Billy in Billy Elliott and school?
Rhys Yeomans: My school day wasn't as long as my regular school day in Manchester. The classes were held at the "Billy House,", where we lived, from 9am-12pm and then it was off to really intense training sessions for the show. The teacher did follow the schemes of school work from my private school, so I probably worked harder than most "Billys" in the house who went to public school. It was like a balancing act really, but it was all worth it. I loved being in the show.
Gabrielle Reilly: I got an email from your manager saying although America hasn't heard of you YET, you are going to be the next big thing. So I watched your video "Best Friend" and had to agree so much so that I wanted you on the front page with all the legends I've interviewed from around the world. Are you starting to get excited about your career? How are you going to develop it? What are you currently working on?
Rhys Yeomans: After dedicating 3 ½ years to preparing for and being in BILLY ELLIOT, I needed a little time off to get my life back to "normal." I've gone back to my old dance school, CENTERPOINTE, which is where all of the dance training was done for the lads playing "Billy" and "Michael" in the show. I have a great management team now and we have been focusing on recording some original songs and shooting videos for them. My producers, Phil Taylor and Kipper Eldridge, are amazing guys. Kipper is a multi-Grammy award winning producer and is best known for producing- Sting's albums. I have also been auditioning for acting roles in films and television.
Gabrielle Reilly: What are your dreams for the future?
Rhys Yeomans: To work hard and hopefully become a major, worldwide performing artist.
Gabrielle Reilly: How has the success you already achieved impacted your day to day life?
Rhys Yeomans: It doesn't phase me. I'm a normal kid from the block, but sometimes people do recognize me from "Billy," which is flattering.
Gabrielle Reilly: I know many of the famous stars I interview have heard the word "no" a million times in the entertainment industry and still do. Many handle the rejection understanding they may have a different idea about casting the character and the "no" had nothing to do with them, or that they are one step closer to a yes. How do you think you are going to handle the word "no" throughout your career without it bringing you down?
Rhys Yeomans: "If at first you don't succeed, try and try again." My Mum always drums that in my head and I do believe that for thousand "No's" has to come one "Yes"!
Gabrielle Reilly: What are your thoughts on bullying at school?
Rhys Yeomans: I was bullied at school because I didn't play football. Even though I liked football, my passion was singing and dancing, so I never fit in. Bullying is absolutely wrong, but sometimes I think adversity makes you stronger and more determined as a person.
Gabrielle Reilly: How much have your family helped you achieve your dreams?
Rhys Yeomans: My family is very supportive, but my Mum is very special and is the one person who is there for me throughout it all - the good days and the bad days, my personal taxi driver and always my biggest supporter. I owe her at a lot and, one day, I will repay her for everything she has done for me. One of the main reasons I want to succeed in my career is because she has sacrificed so much to help me achieve my goals.
Gabrielle Reilly: Well thanks so much for your thoughts Rhys, your family must be very proud of you. I can't wait to hear your next song!