3:01pm Thursday 20th March 2014
CORRIE favourite Jennie McAlpine is gearing up to bring an Easter knees-up to a street near you.
The soap star will swap the Coronation Street cobbles for the DJ booth at Heaton Park Sports and Social Bar, Bury Old Road, for the next instalment of popular club night Bop Local.
The Easter Saturday Prestwich Bop Local event will see the 30-year-old, Fiz Stape in the ITV show, take to the decks after a stint at Bop Local in Chorlton last summer.
Jennie, who was born and bred in Bury, said: “It was a laugh.
“This is like my little tour of Manchester.
“We’re bringing it North.”
Bop Local gives people the chance to enjoy a fun night out, with great music but without having to spend a small fortune on drinks and taxis into the city centre.
The former St Gabriel's RC High School pupil said: “It’s such a great concept.
“Maybe if you don’t feel like going to an actual club.
“It’s like nightclub meets christening buffet.
“It’s Easter weekend, I’m hoping there will be some Easter eggs.
“It’ll be good fun.
“I love my Manchester bands, there will definitely be that in there.
“I think I will be allowed to play a bit of pop.
“A bit of Kylie segued into The Stone Roses is perfect.”
When Jennie is not playing DJ, she is a regular on the nation’s favourite soap, having played Fiz since 2001.
In recent months, production of the show has moved from its 53-year-old base at Granada Studios to a new 7.7 acre site at Media City, Salford Quays, the subject of recent documentary, Coronation Street: a Moving Story which featured cast members past and present and Tony Warren, the show’s creator.
Jennie, who lives in Manchester city centre, said: “They have built this amazing new place.
“It’s been purpose built for us.
“Tony Warren was on the documentary.
“We are so lucky that he is still here and still part of the furniture really.
“I saw him the other week, he was looking round.
“It’s amazing really. He created this, this is him. It wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him.
“He’s still very much part of it.”
Away from Corrie and Jennie also runs a restaurant with her partner Chris Farr — Annies, Old Bank Street, Manchester.
She said: “We’ve been open a year.
“It’s called Annies because it’s just off St Ann’s Square but also, hopefully, the kind of place it is — it’s a real home from home, traditional food that perhaps your grandma, or if you were lucky enough to have an auntie Annie, cooked.
“Cottage pie, Lancashire hotpot, home-cooked chips.
“I get a few of the Corrie lot in there.”
As a teenager, Jennie entered a number of young comedian competitions at which she met Bolton funny man Peter Kay and it was her comic timing which impressed Corrie bosses, helping to land her a long-term contract at the age of 17.
She said: “I entered this competition for a young comedian.
“I think (Peter Kay) sort of judged it. He put me through which he has never really let me forget.
“He was kind of a mentor.
“It was a long time ago, he was very popular but he was kind of at the start of his fame.
“I think it’s nice when people are local people to you, you can look up to them in a different way because it feels like they’re from down the road and they’ve done it and you can do it.
“Someone from round the corner and they speak like you.”
Jennie began honing her acting skills at Bury Parish Players followed by Carol Godby's Theatre Workshop and also appeared on stage at The Met in Bury.
She said: “I used to do all sorts of daft things there.
“I’ve not been for years, I really must do.
“It’s really hard keeping up, every week I’ve got mates and people in shows.
“There’s so much going on. It’s amazing, the theatres. We are lucky in the city centre.
“Then we’ve got The Met, the Bolton Octagon which is amazing.”
And while she admits she would like to tread the boards herself one day, following in the footsteps of former co-stars Julie Hesmondhalgh and Suranne Jones, she is more than happy on the Street, with storylines featuring drama and tears over the summer with on-screen partner Tyrone Dobbs, played by Walkden’s Alan Halsall.
She said: “I love Corrie.
“I really, genuinely can’t see a world without Coronation Street.”
Tickets for the Easter Saturday Prestwich Bop Local, on April 19 at Heaton Park Sports and Social Bar, are available in advance for £6 at Pinto's, Fairfax Road, Prestwich, from boplocal.com or £7 on the night. Doors 8.30pm to 1am.
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