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Why slimmed down tenor has a treat for fans

PUBLISHED: 11:43 02 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:09 14 July 2010

Benjamin Lake

Benjamin Lake

Hethersett-based tenor Benjamin Lake is a mere shadow of his former self which is good news for his fans.

For Ben has slimmed down from a monster 26 stone to just over 14 stone and reckons his voice improved as the weight fell off during a strict diet regime.

Hethersett-based tenor Benjamin Lake is a mere shadow of his former self which is good news for his fans.

For Ben has slimmed down from a monster 26 stone to just over 14 stone and reckons his voice improved as the weight fell off during a strict diet regime.

Now local people will be able to enjoy Ben's music and personality in Hethersett Village Hall once again following his successful appearance there a year ago. He will be performing live on stage on Sunday, November 1 at 3pm.

"I am sure that my singing has improved since I lost the weight. I used to get very hot and breathing was difficult at times. As I lost the weight I had to learn to control my voice again and that proved difficult for a while, but I now think I am a better singer," he said.

Despite being born and having lived for much of his life in London, Ben is very much at home in his adopted county of Norfolk and is enjoying village life with his partner and two-year-old son.

He got both the singing and acting bug at an early age. His grandmother was quite a well known entertainer in the London area and he often accompanied her and even appeared on stage. It was thanks in part to the encouragement of one of his head teachers that he went to Trinity College of Music in London to study voice under singing teacher John Noble.

Ben's career seems to have taken many twists and turns from appearances in contemporary operas by Goldschmidt and Poulenc to appearances on Michael Barrymore's My Kind of Music where he performed Vesti La Giubba from Pagliacci and that proved to be his big break with a part following in the dance show Spirit of the Dance and then a new show One World in Reno, Nevada.

At this point in his career Ben became the darling of sporting stadiums, opening events in America and Europe and famously singing the National Anthem, Jerusalem and Land of Hope and Glory at the opening of the Rugby League World Cup.

Then followed his favourite role. He was cast as serial adulterer Dwight in Jerry Springer The Opera and made such a success of the part that he was invited to double up in the part of God.

Although very controversial, Jerry Springer The Opera won numerous awards and Ben won Best West End Newcomer of the Year for his work on the show. Later he toured with the show around Britain. He feels that the controversial Springer show gave him the opportunity to express himself and to make the part his own.

Ben has also appeared in the West End in Phantom of the Opera before moving away from the London stage and more into the concert and corporate area, entertaining at company functions throughout the UK and in many foreign countries and appearing in an engagingly titled 12 Tenors show in Monte Carlo. It keeps him both busy and fit although he admits he has to avoid the lavish buffets that usually come with these events.

“It would be so easy to pile the weight on again,” he laughed.

Tickets for the Hethersett concert, which will include a wide spread of music from opera to shows and ballads, are priced at £10 including refreshments and can be booked on 01603 812829.

Ben has a website at www.benjaminlake.com

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