Natalie Pilkington from the harmonious Six said she was “absolutely gobsmacked” when beau Andy McGuire went down on one knee following the show’s finale. After she answered “yes”, the public at Leeds Grand went wild, and the rest of the co-cast threw confetti. Pilkington appended that she had absolutely no idea of McGuire’s plan whatsoever.
Pilkington is what is recognised as a “swing” performer, who understudies several roles on the UK touring production of Six – an uproarious romp which turns Henry VIII’s wives into Beyoncé and Ariana-style divas. On Saturday, she was starring Anne Boleyn, a part she played for the first time on the tour last month.
She believed that Andy had organised it all. Andy had been arranging with the office at Six and with her agent to ensure that she would be on stage, but she had absolutely no idea.
She said she was told there would be a charity announcement at the end of Saturday night’s finale. In which the spouses of Henry VIII gather for a noisy concert, the musical Six has a triumphant, high-energy conclusion. Still, at Saturday night’s entertainment at Leeds Grand, there was extra reason for celebration. Actor Natalie Pilkington was amazed to find her partner, Andy McGuire, get to the stage and make a little speech about setting the “feel-good factor back into theatre” after the disaster caused by the pandemic.
McGuire then bent down on one knee to propose, Pilkington said yes, and the theatre exploded, with the supporting cast showering the pair with confetti.
Pilkington is a “swing” performer who understudies various roles on the UK tour of Six. On Saturday, she was starring Anne Boleyn, a position she played for the first time on the trip last month. In Lucy Moss and Toby Marlow’s performance, which started from a student program at the Edinburgh festival to being a West End break, each of the six queens catches the lead vocal on their tune. Boleyn’s fizzy song, Don’t Lose Ur Head, is one of the most amusing as she recounts how she and Henry had attempted to elope, but the priest said nope.
McGuire said that he and Pilkington coincided through theatre four and a half years ago and that she and the other players in Six had perilously missed being on stage throughout the pandemic. The morning after the proposition, Pilkington tweeted that she still cannot get over the previous night! She was so overwhelmed with all the lovely messages & tweets. She promised that she had read every individual one! Leeds Grand toasted the couple on Twitter with the news, as what a way to end the week.
It is not the first vocal to end with a standing ovation for a wedding proposal. Devon and Wilson got engaged at the Valentine’s Day concert of the hit show Kinky Boots on Broadway in 2016. Lately, the actress returned to the spotlight after working as a teaching assistant in a special needs school when stages shut at the commencement of the pandemic. She said she believes McGuire had been planning several ways to pop the inquiry all through lockdown but had been confused as anything he’d reserved was later cancelled.
Six commenced life at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2017 and progressed on to grow a West End smash. It won five Olivier Awards nominations and was next performed to sell-out appearances in Chicago and on Broadway. The recent UK tour is continuing until September 2022. The West End production is now at the Lyric Theatre till 29 August 2021.