Backstage with Claudia Fragapane

Backstage With Claudia Fragapane
Backstage with Claudia Fragapane

This week, we go backstage with Bristol’s sporting legend, Claudia Fragapane. The popular 23-year-old from Longwell Green is a British artistic gymnast whose career began from the age of six at Hawkes Gym in Easton.

Since then, Claudia has achieved an insanely impressive number of awards including being the first woman since 1930 to win four golds at the Commonwealth Games in 2014, and receiving an individual bronze medal at the 2017 World Championships.

Away from her stellar career in artistic gymnastics, Fragapane also presented her very impressive ability to dance during the 2016 series of the popular TV competition show, Strictly Come Dancing. She finished fourth, and the show (along with that bubbly, infectious personality) propelled her to becoming a household name, beyond Gymnastics.

To find out more about Claudia’s musical motivations and exciting career, keep reading.

First gig, last gig, fav gig?

First: Shawn Mendez

Last: Ed Sheeran

Fav: Ed Sheeran

What does it mean to you for Bristol to finally have an indoor live entertainment arena?

It’s amazing! It keeps Bristol lively and fun and if it’s cold outside it’s nice to have it indoors.

Which artist/band/performer would you like to see perform at YTL Arena Bristol (...and why!)

Lewis Capaldi and Ella Mai. They are amazing artists and I love their music and sound. So real.

Claudia Fragapane. Image by JMP.
Claudia Fragapane. Image by JMP.

What do you love most about Bristol?

It’s unique, artistic and a city where you can be yourself… no judgements.

Has music inspired your gymnastic career at all?

Yes! Music boosts my mood and before I compete, I always put on motivation music which pumps me up.

What do you love most about performing to a live audience? Was performing in front of an audience on Strictly Come Dancing different to competing Infront of your gymnast audience?

I loved learning different dancing techniques and being out of my comfort zone. It’s an amazing feeling when people stand up and clap when you’ve finished your dance. It was very difference dancing to competing. I found dancing harder because I haven’t done it all my life like gymnastics.

Claudia Fragapane & AJ Pritchard Charleston to 'You Give a Little Love' - Strictly 2016: Week 3

What advice would you give aspiring gymnasts who want to follow in your footsteps?

Enjoy yourself. Do the best you can, and have fun! Try not to put pressure on yourself if things you want to do isn’t successful straight away. Keep trying and don’t give up.

Claudia Fragapane, The 2016 British Championships at the Echo Arena Liverpool.

Can you name a song that can instantly boost your mood? (and why)

I don’t have a song I listen to all the time but my favourite music is old R&B.

And finally, can you share an all-time favourite song/ a song that means a lot to you so we can add it to our YTL Arena Backstage Pass playlist?

All old R&B music brings back memories when me and my older sisters are in our bedroom dancing and singing together when we were young.

To listen to our Backstage Playlist on Spotify, click here. For exciting updates at YTL Arena Bristol, follow @ytlarenabristol on social media or sign up to our newsletter