Jenna Lee-James: From Glasgow Roots to West End Stardom
LONDON — From humble beginnings attending dance lessons in Glasgow to becoming a renowned figure on London’s West End, Jenna Lee-James has charted an extraordinary trajectory. With global tours alongside Hugh Jackman and a self-produced debut album, Jenna stands out as a testament to tenacity and raw talent in the performing arts world.
A Steady Ascent to Success
Jenna’s proclivity for performance was palpable from her youngest years. Engaging in dance lessons at the age of three and branching out to singing lessons in Glasgow by eight, it was clear she was destined for the spotlight. Vacations with her family often featured Jenna participating in talent contests, refining her classical singing skills.
Dreams of gracing the West End stages started forming in Jenna’s adolescent years. Despite facing four gruelling years of auditions, Jenna’s passion for theatre never wavered. She landed her debut West End role, emphasising that her journey was marked by persistence and authenticity.
Branching Out with BBA Management
Jenna’s association with the prestigious BBA Management, headed by Bronia Buchanan, was established two years ago, this collaboration has suppported Jenna’s career trajectory. Their relationship foundation was laid over a simple yet decisive Zoom call. Jenna praises the agency’s dedicated and structured approach, attributing much of her recent successes to their unwavering support.
Jenna’s self-funded debut album “On the Edge,” recorded at the iconic Abbey Road Studio Two, remains a milestone. She views the project as a homage to her ardent supporters, especially her parents.
However, 2019’s collaboration with Hollywood luminary Hugh Jackman for “The Man. The Music. The Show” was a watershed moment in Jenna’s career. The pinnacle of this collaboration was her rendition of “Somebody to Love” at Glasgow’s Hydro Arena, fulfilling a long-held dream of her father’s.
Jenna’s acting prowess has been showcased in roles such as Grizabella in “Cats” and Scaramouche in “We Will Rock You.” Now, as she steps into the shoes of Queen Elsa in “Frozen” on the West End, replacing Samantha Barks, the weight and thrill of embodying such an iconic character isn’t lost on Jenna. As “Frozen” celebrates its 10th anniversary, coinciding with Disney’s centenary year, Jenna encapsulates Elsa’s magic and message: “Love conquers all.”