From an early age, Alicia always wanted to perform.Taking after her Dad (professional Big Band/Swing singer Jeff Hooper), her first stage appearance came aged three, during one of her Dads gigs in Lemington Spa, singing ‘Viva Espana!’
As a child she took lessons in ballet, tap and modern dance at ‘Gill Elliott School of dance.’ It was there she was introduced to the ‘New Venture Players’ where, aged 9, she secured the lead in their productions of ‘Annie’, Annie Warbucks’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz’ at the Dolman Theatre.
She joined Stagecoach Theatre Arts shortly after, where she performed the lead in ‘Smyke’ and ‘The Rainbow Juggler’, as well as being awarded a Distinction for her Grade 4 in Group Musical Theatre.
During this time, she also started to learn the piano and clarinet, joining the Newport Music Centre Junior Wind Band every Saturday morning under the direction of Mr and Mrs Linton (at the time Miss Mulcahy!)
In her early teens, Alicia decided to try out for a scholarship at the renowned ‘Sylvia Young Theatre School’ in London where she sang, danced and performed a monologue for Sylvia Young herself.
Out of 800 applicants, she got down to the last 50!
It was an ad in the paper that saw her join ‘The HTV Drama Workshop’ next in Cardiff, where she auditioned over a 10 week period for a place at the acting school and casting agency. It was here aged 15, that she secured the role of ‘Amber Hurst’ in the CBBC drama ‘The Story of Tracy Beaker’ series 2.
After finishing the series and completing her GCSEs at Duffryn High, she moved to Caerleon Comprehensive to study A Levels in Music, Drama and English Literature.
By this point, Alicia was now studying for her Grade 7 clarinet and upon moving to Caerleon, took up the Saxophone under the direction of Woodwind Tutor Ceri Rees. She joined the Newport City Band soon after and at one such concert, was given the opportunity to back her Dad at Gwent Music’s Christmas Extravaganza at Newport Leisure Centre.
Alicia also performed first Clarinet with the Newport Music Centre Senior Wind Band at the Royal Albert Hall as part of Music for Youth.
She started teaching with Gwent Music aged 20 after returning from a Gap Year which took her to Hong Kong, Australia, Bali and Thailand.
During this time, she also began singing professionally and landed the role of ‘Polly Perkins’ in Owen Money’s Pantomine ‘Robinson Crusoe’ touring Theatres across South Wales.
Following that, she spent two years touring the Haven Holiday parks every weekend with 70’s tribute band ‘Le Freak.’
She soon went on to join bands ‘Classic Soul Dogs’ and ‘John Oliver’s Live’ which at the time was one of the most successful function bands in the U.K.
Alicia has performed all across the UK and abroad and has been fortunate enough to perform for the likes of Ant & Dec, Gareth Gates, Kelly Osbourne, Joe Calzaghe, Rob Brydon, Warren Gatland, Bryan McFadden, Ioan Gruffyd, Radio 1’s Greg James and Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine. She has also shared the stage with likes of Charlotte Church and X Factor finalist and Eurovision Entry Lucie Jones.
Personal career highlights include performing at the Dubai Film Festival, the ‘Celebrity Golf Gala’ at the Celtic Manor Resort and was most recently a warm up act for pop star Jess Glynn in London’s exclusive Mayfair.
She is currently the singer in many function bands including ‘The Scarletons’ and ‘The Dave Mitchell Soul Band’, performing mainly at weddings and corporate events every weekend across the U.K.
Alicia also goes out as a solo singer and as part of her acoustic duo business, ‘Songbird.’
Alicia is currently in her 11th year teaching with Gwent Music and has taught in many Primary, Secondary schools and Colleges across Newport, Monmouthshire, Torfaen, Blaenau Gwent and Cardiff.
She teaches many genres of singing including Classical, foreign language and rock and pop, whilst priding herself on her 100% exam pass rate!