BBC Sound of Music Maria

BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?
Abi - Aoife - Belinda - Connie - Helena - Laura - Leanne - Meliz - Simona - Siobhan

Leanne Dobinson

Leanne Dobinson

Leanne is not Maria in the new West End production of The Sound of Music at The London Palladium - she was voted off the BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? programme on Saturday 2 September 2006.

Leanne Dobinson is 20 and is currently unemployed, although she was, until just before audition for How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?, working as an assistant manager in a ladies' clothes shop. Apart from singing lessons when she was 12 to 15, Leanne is completely self taught. Amazingly she can sing in Italian, French, German and Latin - all through borrowing some CDs from the library.

Leanne lives in Colchester, Essex and has two younger sisters. At the special concert at Andrew Lloyd Webber's country home at Sydmonton, Leanne sung 'Wouldn't it be loverly?' from My Fair Lady.

Regarding her similarities with Maria from The Sound of Music, Leanne says that "I am kind-hearted, I have child-like qualities, love children and have a real flair for adventure and trying new things," adding that "My personality fits perfectly to the role as Maria and because I have had no formal training, I am a blank canvas that the producers and director can work with."

12 August 2006: For the first of the BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? 'knock-out' shows Leanne sung the Bjork song 'It's Oh So Quiet' - she obtained enough public phone votes to go through to the next round next week...

19 August 2006: On the second of the BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? 'knock-out' shows Leanne sung the Dee C Lee song 'See The Day' - she obtained enough public phone votes to go through to the next round next week...

26 August 2006: On the third BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? 'knock-out' show Leanne sung the Dolly parton song '9 to 5' - she obtained enough public phone votes to go through to the next round next week...

2 September 2006: On the fourth BBC How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? 'knock-out' show Leanne sung Hopelessly Devoted To You from the musical Grease. She manged to secure enough public phone votes to go through this evening's first round, but come bottom along with Helena after the second round voting. They then sung a joint rendition of the song I Don't Know How To Love Him from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Jesus Christ Superstar. After much deliberation Andrew Lloyd Webber said that he wanted to save Helena, so Leanne had to say goodbye. Afterwards she said: "I knew this was coming. When the standard in this high - I expected it. If my age was an issue they shouldn't have put me here but I'm grateful for the opportunity. It's been amazing. And anyway - I'm glad I'm out because next week it's all about dancing!"