Aston New, 24, Highbury born-and-bred, works on reception at Gymbox Bank. He shares with us how he loves to keep members happy and how he can’t wait to perform in the forthcoming musical, Saturday Night Fever. We meet him.
How long have you been working at Gymbox?
I’ve worked for Gymbox for two months, time has literally flown by! The members talk to me like I’ve been there for years. It’s such a friendly environment, and since I’ve started both the staff (reception, sales, personal trainers) and members have made me feel welcome. Slotted right in!
Has fitness always been a big part of your life?
Yes, I’ve always been interested in sport and fitness. As I a teenager I trained in kung-fu, and at school loved all things sporty - but I then moved into dance. I train as much as I can - I’m either a early-bird or night owl, so I either get my workouts in early in the day or in the evening.
You’re a dancer, tell us about your dance history so far?
I started dancing as a teenager was obsessed with music videos. I trained at the Urdang Academy in Islington and I’ve had the time of my life since graduating. I’ve been in musicals and TV shows such asHairspray, Ragtime and Saturday Night Fever. I’ve also danced on few TV shows Xfactor and Britain’s Got Talent, and got to work with some amazing artists such as Leona, Alexandra, Burke, JLS... The great thing about my job is I get to travel a lot, so I’ve been to Russia, New York, China and Singapore.
Tell us about the Saturday Night Fever production you’re going to be in
Saturday Night Fever is a musical based on the the classic John Travolta film about life in New York in the 70s. The music is written by the Bee Gees, so be prepared to come and sing along because it’s definitely a fun show filled with loads of amazing dance, singing, and some outrageous costumes. I did the show in Germany and I’m so glad to be involved in the forthcoming a UK tour. I play a character called Chester, who’s a smooth club singer. The show is travelling the UK - we open in Bath in November, but will be back in London in January/February 2015. Hit me up for discount!
It is ‘originals’ month, so in what ways is Gymbox original?
I’ve never been to a gym or worked at a gym that has sooooo many classes, and working on reception you see how popular they are. At Bank it’s literally a battle of booking your favourite class early because they fill up so quickly. I love that we have guys who are not afraid to do Yoga and Ballet Barre, and the ladies really get stuck in with boxing and Muay Thai.
In what ways do you think you are original?
I’m not afraid of a challenge - I’m for trying anything once! I’m a very determined person and and very competitive. I’m very much my own person - I’ve got my own sense of style, known for wearing v-necks and vests.
Do you think you’re a good brand match with Gymbox?
For sure! It’s cool a cool brand, and I love the ’clubby’ feeling of the place, with the DJs every night. It definitely has created a space for young people to go to the gym. I’m all about energy, atmosphere and having a good time - you definitely get all of that at Gymbox!
Have you made friends at Gymbox?
I’m lucky as I get to work with two of best friends Jermaine Johnson (Bank reception) and Luke Wilson (Holborn reception). We’ve danced together from a young age so it’s nice that we get to work together at Gymbox, but also work in our respective careers - dancing, acting and musical theatre.
What are the main challenges of working at reception?
During peak hours you have to be able to multi task at the speed of lightening. We have a joke on reception that I’m the ’towel king’ - I can fill up the towel stand, hand out tickets, scan people through and be on the phone all simultaneously. I don’t think members realise we have to do a lot at one given time so forgive us if we hand you a towel instead of your protein shake! It gets hectic sometimes! We always have a smile on our faces.
What have you learned about people since working in this job?
Generally most people come into the gym to relieve stress, or find it a place where they can remove all their troubles from the day. I try and make sure that I say hello and ’how’s it going’ to as many people as I can. As soon as you say that or ask them how their day is, you can see that it just ’lightens them up’ for that moment. Is as simple as asking someone how they are. A lot of our members love to chat, and a few bring in gifts like chocolates and sweets for us at reception. The best thing about Gymbox is that you can bring your own personality, and it definitely reflects on reception because we’re all different.
What’s been the strangest request from a member?
I wouldn’t say this is a request but one member - who remains nameless! - has had to buy a lock from us at least seven times. God knows where he puts them!
For more info on Saturday Night Fever, click here.
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