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The Over The Rainbow girls  
We take a look at what the other Dorothy finalists are up to now...
11 Dorothy finalists line up for Over The Rainbow
Back in May, when Danielle Hope triumphed in the final public vote to win BBC1’s Over The Rainbow and land the iconic role of Dorothy in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s upcoming production of The Wizard of Oz, it was time to celebrate – after weeks of hard work. From acting missions with Sheila Hancock to dance classes with John Partridge and singing with Charlotte Church, not to mention performing in front of the panel, the TV-viewing public and Andrew Lloyd Webber himself week after week…And of course it wasn’t only our winning Dorothy celebrating: for all eleven of the fantastic Over The Rainbow final contestants, it was just the beginning of the yellow brick road to success. As Danielle gets ready to make her West End debut at the London Palladium next spring, we take a look at what her fellow former Dorothies are up to.

Amy Diamond

She might have been the first to leave the competition, but former model Amy hasn’t let it hold her back – she is currently starring as Janet Van De Graaff in the well-received London Fringe premiere production of The Drowsy Chaperone, Upstairs at the Gatehouse Theatre, London until 31st October.

Bronte Barbe

Andrew had a tough decision to make in week two, when Bronte and Lauren Samuels were announced as being in the bottom two, despite both girls being in his personal top five. Sadly, it was goodbye to Bronte – but our pink Dorothy is bound to be back, as she’s currently studying at Mountview Academy. Watch this space…

Dani Rayner

At just 16, Dani was the youngest girl in the competition when she left the show in week three. She may have returned to school after the competition in order to finish her A Levels, but it’s not goodbye to the stage for Dani just yet as in December she will appear as the Princess in the Liverpool Empire pantomime Aladdin – alongside Pamela Anderson as the Genie.

Emilie Fleming

As the Wild Card Dorothy, Emilie returned to the competition after a public vote secured her a place in the final eleven but, in the fourth week of the live shows, she found herself in the bottom two alongside Sophie Evans. With Andrew choosing to save Sophie, it was an emotional goodbye for Emilie, who vowed to the audience: “I’m going to train… you will see me!” And no doubt we will, as Emile is indeed now training at Guildford School of Acting.

Stephanie Davis

There were more tears in week five, as we said goodbye to Liverpool’s Stephanie Davis after she took on Steph Fearon in the dreaded sing-off. There wasn’t much time for tears after the show, though, as it was over the rainbow and into Hollyoaks for Stephanie – she joined the Channel 4 teen soap shortly after leaving Over The Rainbow and can now be seen on TV screens playing the character of Sinead O’Connor.

Jenny Douglas

Scotland’s Jenny was the first victim of the ‘Dorothy Cull’ that saw two girls sail over the rainbow in the sixth week of the live shows. However, it wasn’t quite the end of the yellow brick road for Jenny – she recently announced that she had been cast in the principal role of Meat in the upcoming touring production of the Queen-inspired musical We Will Rock You.

Jessica Robinson

As the second Dorothy to face the cull, Jessica became the seventh girl to leave the competition. Since leaving the show, she has moved from her native Middlesborough to London, where she’s studying at Arts Educational Schools. As Andrew said, “you’re a real star in the making” – so watch out for Miss Robinson…

Steph Fearon

Finishing in fourth place was Steph, narrowly missing out on a place in the final show. The standing ovation Steph received from the Over The Rainbow audience as she made her goodbyes was clearly a sign of things to come though – since leaving the show she has appeared in the first major London revival of Smokey Joe’s Café, and as Dorothy in The Wiz, a Motown-inspired remake of The Wizard of Oz at the Milton Keynes Theatre.

Lauren Samuels

Having made it all the way to the final three, Lauren was praised by Charlotte in the final week as “[having] the best voice in the competition…” and, when she became the first girl to leave the final show, there was yet another standing ovation from the audience. Lauren is currently appearing as Sandy in Grease – having become the first of all the girls to make her West End debut. Charlotte clearly knows her stuff…

Sophie Evans

In July, runner-up Sophie was announced as The Wizard of Oz’s Alternate Dorothy – she will play the role on Tuesday evenings, beginning 8th March, and for 7 performances in the weeks commencing 2 May, 5 September & 12 September 2011. She is also joining some of her fellow Dorothies at the Arts Educational School, on a musical theatre training course as funded by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Danielle Hope

After a whirlwind few months of interviews, video shoots and live performances, our winning Dorothy will grace the London Palladium stage early next year, when previews for The Wizard of Oz begin on 7th February. In the meantime, she’s also attending classes at the Arts Educational School. Next year certainly promises to be “a whiz of a wiz!”

Posted on: 15th October 2010

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