If you caught Friday’s episode of The Big Audition, then you’ll already have met our two new fitness presenters Linda and Toby. We sat down with the duo on their training day to find out more about their feelings towards the show and being the new faces at Ideal World…
What initially attracted you to participate in the Big Audition?
Linda: I found the email in my junk mail actually and I saw it and I just thought “Do you know what? I could actually go for that” I just thought, yeah I think I’ve got the personality to be able to kind of pull it off. I’ve never done anything like this before so it was all new but I just thought “yeah I think I can rise to the challenge.”
Toby: So mine was more about the transition from being an athlete and taking my skills and personality and bringing it to a different format. They came to me about the fitness presenter role, it just sounded like something I’d be good at and what I would like to do. I thought about presenting, I didn’t even know there was a fitness presenting job out there.
How did you find the experience of The Big Audition?
Linda: It was initially scary for me, I was just very intimidated by all the people I saw because I just initially thought to myself “oh my god everyone is looking really fit and healthy, looking buff!” And then there’s me! I was inches away from getting in a taxi and going home. I just felt really intimidated but I just turned that around, from the negative to the positive “You know what? I’m actually here for a reason and I’m going to give it my best shot”
Toby: I found it daunting as well! I think because it was completely out of my comfort zone. There was definitely the element of fear. Especially the waiting room, the bit right before you go on where you’re just sat there by yourself. I’ve only got fond memories of that day. The whole day was amazing and I’m glad that I did it. You just didn’t know what to expect.
So getting to know you, any personal achievements that you’re really proud of?
Linda: Oooh where do I start? I’ve had a number one single, I’ve had a top ten single, I’ve played Mamma Morton on a cruise ship twice for Royal Caribbean, I’ve been in Silent Witness, I’ve just finished doing a film with Gerard Butler. So Quite a bit!
Toby: There’s a lot! When I talked to her initially, there was a lot she kept to herself! I just do bobsleigh. Probably attending the Olympics, I’ve also been on three game shows, but most importantly I got A* on my GCSE’S!
Do you have anyone that is your main inspiration?
Toby: I would say, my mum, even though she’s really annoying (laughs), bringing up four children by herself. She taught me a lot about perseverance and sticking by your word. She’s definitely my role model.
Linda: I’d actually say my dad, because my dad is a very strong character, even though he’s very chilled and laid back. He was the one who actually encouraged me to sing and he was always the one who took me to singing competitions. My dad was always the one who was like “C’mon you can do this” he was very encouraging and supportive.
Who would you most like to work with and why?
Linda: Probably Gerard Butler, he’s adorable. Maybe Denzel Washington, I think he’s amazing. I would love to sing with Stevie Wonder or Aretha Franklin.
Toby: I am a huge fan of Michael Jackson, or maybe Graham Norton, he’s really funny. Denzel would be quite cool or Will Smith.
In terms of your training day? What have you gone through?
Toby: It’s been awesome! The day has been so informative, it’s just been a pleasure to absorb all the information. We did all the studio work, which was the key bit, getting to see the studio and visualising how it would be. It’s been great.
Linda: Yeah same really, challenging but in a positive way, being thrown in the deep end, actually being on the studio floor. It actually makes you realise that this is it, you know, this is what will happen. The challenging thing for me is learning about a brand new product that I’d never seen before and throwing yourself in and learning. You learn so much about yourself as an individual, like how much you are prepared to take on and how much you are prepared to change. But still remaining authentic, I would think to myself, would I buy from me?