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Former teacher stars in Madonna tribute

Posted onPosted on 19th Apr

Before becoming the star of a top touring show celebrating the music of Madonna, Elly Jarmain was getting Forest Town and Mansfield Woodhouse students into the groove as a singing teacher.

“I really enjoyed my time teaching at Garibaldi School and Manor Academy,” says Elly, who now spends all her time performing as Madonna in the critically-acclaimed theatre show Into the Groove, which is coming to Mansfield Palace Theatre on 4th May.

The role is a childhood dream come true for Elly. “The very first 45 I bought, at the age of eight, was Into the Groove,” she says. “I was a massive Madonna fan. I remember the first time I saw her – on TV’s Top of the Pops. I was mesmerised by her fashion sense and attitude.”

Elly says that Madonna’s stance as a trendsetter led to a life-long love of the singer’s music.

“I’d studied piano from the age of six,” she says, “so music was important to me from a very early age.

“I applied for the conservatoire at the Royal College of Music. They weren’t overly impressed with my piano playing, but asked if I could sing. That was my way in.”

At 18, Elly joined a band, who remarked on her resemblance to Madonna.

“The drummer is still in the show now,” she says. In 2000, Into the Groove was put together and, steadily, it has progressed to selling out performances at the UK’s best theatres year in, year out.

As well as recreating Madonna’s greatest hits – including Holiday, Like a Prayer, Papa Don’t Preach, Vogue, Material Girl and Hung Up – live on stage, Into the Groove also reflects Madonna’s reputation as a fashion icon.

“With 56 costume changes squeezed into the spectacular,” says Elly, “and scores of high-energy routines featuring the show’s dancers, there’s a lot that goes into a performance of Into the Groove.”

Tickets for Into The Groove can be bought at the Palace Theatre Box Office on Leeming Street, or call 01623 633133 or go to