Life

Even though I have Down's syndrome, I know how to party. I'm the first and last on the dance floor

Sisters Sophie and Emily on not letting Down's syndrome get in the way of a party

Down The Lens creators Emily and Sophie

Emily and Sophie have set up their own drama therapy group

Sophie Potter wants to tell people that, even though she has Down’s syndrome, she knows how to party. The 34-year-old is down from Hull, visiting her younger sister Emily in East London. They chat and laugh about their ideal night together.

SOPHIE: I always feel excited to go out. I had Guinness and blackcurrant last night, but my favourite is cocktails. I love piña coladas.

EMILY: You also like a Sex on the Beach or Cosmopolitan. You’re very Sex and the City vibes. If you could do absolutely anything on a night out, what would you do?

Sophie Potter heading for a night out
Sophie loves a night out, and has a big collection of sparkly dresses to wear

S: I like eating out. I would go for a curry. And then I would walk through the park. 

E: Maybe not in the dark! What about dancing?

S: I love going clubbing. I love being on the dance floor. 

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E: You’re the first one on the dance floor and the last one on the dance floor, always. What kind of music would we be listening to?

S: I really love ’80s music. And Motown. 

E: What would you wear for our ’80s disco?

S: I’d like to wear shiny leggings and a nice shirt. And high heels. 

E: I’m the opposite. Flat shoes. Casual. I couldn’t be on the dance floor all night in high heels. You’ve also got lots of sparkly dresses.

S: Oh! And a nice bag. 

E: What’s usually in your bag? 

S: Makeup. Lipstick. Perfume. 

E: Soph has honestly got about 60 bottles of perfume.

S: I like the Marc Jacobs Daisy one. That’s my favourite.

E: We usually have a bit of a build-up, don’t we? There’ll be drinking with friends. Music. Getting ready. Where are we looking at going for your birthday?

S: I think we’re going to see Magic Mike

E: You watched the advertisement the other week didn’t you and were like: “Em, can we go see Magic Mike?”

S: We saw Strictly!

E: And we saw Mamma Mia! This year we went to Paris. What did we do last year when we went to Edinburgh?

Sophie and Emily as kids together in Hull
Sophie and Emily as kids together in Hull

S: We did our play [Sophie]. 

E: It was all about growing up together. It was based on our experiences growing up right from the beginning ’til the present day. 

S: And it had ’90s music all through it. 

E: Yep, we had lots of ’90s music. We got Phoebe Waller-Bridge funding [through the Keep It Fringe Fund, the Fleabag star is honorary president of the Fringe Society] and we took it to Edinburgh and toured it. The reason Sophie’s here in London is because we’ve got a screening of a short film. It’s called What Sophie Wants and it’s about you wanting to look and feel… 

S: Sexy. 

E: Yeah, you don’t like to be called cute or adorable. What makes you feel sexy?

S: I like wearing dresses. And heels. And curly hair. And dancing. 

E: So at the disco, you’re the last one on the dance floor. What would be the last disco song?

S: I Wanna Dance With Somebody by Whitney Houston. 

E: Great song. You’re doing your best dance moves, the lights come up, who would you like to be in front of you? Who would you like to be dancing with? 

S: Richard, my boyfriend. 

E: You’ve known him for a long, long time. You are engaged actually. We’ve lost the ring a few times. We don’t know where they go. And then you message Richard telling him he needs to buy you another one! What else do you like doing?

S: I love bowling. And going to the cinema. I like comedy. I like Only Fools and Horses and Friends. When I see people on the TV like me, I am so proud. They’ve been on Coronation Street and EastEnders. That makes me so happy. I would like to be on TV.

E: You tell me every day and I’ve not made it happen yet! We’ve set up a company called Down the Lens. It’s basically drama therapy for adults. We also do specialist care and nannying for kids with additional needs who can’t be in school. My dream is to get a space and do workshops. 

S: I think you’re always taking care of me and you are amazing. 

E: We take care of each other. I think you take care of me as much as I do of you. We have lots of fun. You teach me lots of lessons about not being bothered what people think.

Find out more about Down the Lens.

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