Love Island star Amber Davies star on soulmates, her theatre roots and a surprise delivery from Dolly Parton.
The friends I met at Urdang [a performing arts academy in London] are my soulmates. For my 21st birthday, they got me a Daniella Draper ring with ‘you are loved’ engraved on the outside and all their initials on the inside. I never take it off.
I used to copy everything my elder sister Jade did – if she hadn’t got into musicals, I probably wouldn’t be where I am today. Every Friday night we’d put on a show and make our parents pay £2.50 to watch – there was always a Spice Girls song in it.
At my high-school prom I was voted Most Likely To Become Famous. Love Island changed my life but I didn’t want to be a celebrity; just to do what I love every day. I inherited my singing talent from my dad’s side of the family – his uncle was an opera singer.
I couldn’t live without my mum [Sue, a mental health nurse]. On Mother’s Day I’d always make her a card rather than buy one. This one is in Welsh. We used to argue like cat and dog, but we get each other now – I’m a younger version of her.
This has been my lucky charm since I was tiny. I wore it when I competed in the eisteddfod [Welsh cultural festival] and I put it on my dress for the Love Island final [which she won with Kem Cetinay in 2017]. Now I keep it on my dressing table at the Savoy Theatre.
In the musical adaptation of the film 9 to 5, I play Jane Fonda’s character. When I auditioned I didn’t know that Dolly Parton was so involved. I never expected a personal letter from her, but she went to all that effort to write to me, which was so heartwarming.
I dedicated so much of my childhood to dance. Ballet, tap, modern, jazz, hip-hop – I learned it all. I wasn’t a normal child – I started dancing when I was three. I’d love to do Strictly but I’ve never done the tango so it would be a challenge.
I’m such a Nana’s girl. She wasn’t keen on me going on Love Island but now, I swear she watches the final every night. I knew Nana [here with Amber and her sister Jade] wanted me to get back into musical theatre. Now that I have, she can sleep well at night.
Words: Emily Hill
Amber is starring in 9 to 5 The Musical at the Savoy Theatre, London WC2, until 31 August; 9to5themusical.co.uk