SINGER, YouTuber and social media influencer — former Love Island star Savanna Darnell has several strings to her bow.
The prolific vlogger, who grew up in Dinnington, is back in the UK after a spell living in the USA.
We caught up with her for the first time since lockdown eased last year to hear about her provocative new single, her future plans and why she believes high heels are for everyone.
Q: Hi Savanna, when we featured you during the lockdown you were living in New York tell us about how you came to move away and what led you to move back again?
A: Moving away was a crazy fun experience, I had just gone through a breakup, I was really down in the dumps, two big jobs had just been cancelled, I was supposed to be touring Brazil with a show and now I was living back at home with my mum — I was very upset.
My mum mentioned this would be a great time to go and move to New York and see what happens, so I did.
I packed up one big suitcase and booked a one-way trip to New York.
I stayed on my cousin’s sofa for the first three weeks until I found a job and an apartment.
Then I met new friends, found my kind of people and started vlogging my experience in New York as a Brit.
I moved back to England because my lease was ending, I wanted to continue my business in England.
I started Savvy Heels, which is all about dancing in high heels, over in New York, and I wanted to make it worldwide, so I came back to England to save money and to continue with my business.
Q: What part of the city wee you in and what were the best and worst bits of life there?
A: I was living in Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan.
I had moved around a lot in New York. I started living in a small apartment in Williamsburg Brooklyn, a bedroom with no windows in, which was hell!.
I then moved to another apartment in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and lived with three other people, then again moved to a lovely studio apartment in Hell’s Kitchen which was my favourite.
Living with roommates made me realise I love my own space!
Q: You’ve been vlogging regularly on YouTube for a few years — how would you describe your content and what sort of feedback do you get?
A: I started uploading in 2018 after Love Island, but I would say I only just started uploading consistently since 2021.
The feedback I get back on my vlogs are amazing.
I get a lot of people saying I inspire them to step out of their comfort zone, they learn from my vlogs, and they love to see me living life as an independent woman in a big city such as New York. I get a lot of great feedback and it makes me very happy.
Q: New York is a bit of a melting pot but what did people make of your accent?
A: They love the British accent. It gets a LOT of attention over there.
Q: Where did you get the idea for Savvy Heels from? Do you reckon it would take off in Rotherham — especially among men?!
A: I’ve been taking a lot of “heels” classes.
When I graduated from college, I saw what I enjoyed and what I didn’t enjoy and I wanted to make my very own space where women, and men, felt comfortable and safe in a dance environment.
Dance studios can be intimidating places and I didn’t want that for Savvy Heels.
I get a lot of feedback about how great the energy is in classes and how I make them feel comfortable when learning how to dance.
To be honest, I have not thought about starting Savvy Heels in Rotherham!
Q: What’s the story behind the new single, Vegan P***y? Have you ever been involved with such a provocative song before? Tell us a bit about the songwriting, recording and producing process. What’s the reception been like so far?
A: I wanted to make a fun, cheeky song about vegansim without it being so serious, as people do see vegans as serious human beings.
So I was thinking how can I put vegan across in a fun, cheeky way — and this is how it happened.
Everyone has loved it so far. They love the music video, which is definitely something I’m very proud of.
I did it with a great production team in New York called Blck Lounge.
My songs have definitely been very sweet and PG before this song, but it was time to switch it up, and this is the music i enjoy.
Q: What’s up next — more partying and vlogging or something different?
A: I’m living in Manchster now and growing Savvy Heels is a priority.
Releasing more music is a priority, as well as vlogging and working with some exciting brands coming up.
Partying and wasting time and money has been put on the back seat for a while. I definitely feeling very focused.
Look out, because I will be vlogging.
You can catch Savanna’s latest vlogs and see the video for Vegan P***y on her YouTube channel.