St Albans girl stars in Anchor advert

A NINE-year-old thespian from St Albans who acted in Les Mis�rables has completed filming for a new commercial after being chosen from hundreds of children and adults who attended casting auditions.

Abbey primary school pupil Asha Banks (pictured) has a “strange experience” in the advertisement for Anchor according to her mum, Sophie Banks.

She explained: “The commercial shows a family through the years, from the ‘80s to now, as Anchor is celebrating its 150-year anniversary.

“Asha had the strange experience of meeting herself as a two year old, aged five, 16 and a 23 year old when she went to film the ad.”

She filmed at Black Island Studios in London over a three-day period last week - at one stage sharing the set with an owl which also appears in the ad.

When Asha was just seven she auditioned for Les Mis�rables, having to sing in front of the West End director of the show.

She landed the part and played young �ponine for six months between November 2011 and April 2012.

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She has also appeared in the BBC’s EastEnders and Call the Midwife.

Asha recently got down to the last seven to play the role of Matilda in the West End, which Sophie said was an, “amazing achievement and was hugely exciting for her”.

The youngster has been attending Top Hat Stage School in St Albans since the age of seven.

Principal - and Asha’s agent - Warren Bacci, said: “It’s great to see how she has progressed. Asha is a talented girl and I can’t wait to see the ad on TV.”

The commercial will be shown in early January.

In the meantime, Asha is playing the crocodile in the Top Hat pantomime this year, Peter Pan, today, at the Sandpit Theatre at Sandringham School.

Her brother Fin Banks, 11 years old, also has the acting and singing bug and was in a West End musical from May until September at the Regents Park open air theatre.

The Verulam School pupil played Edgar in Ragtime, directed by three-times Olivier award winning director, Timothy Sheader.