Musical theatre leading men and X Factor stars Jonathan Ansell and Rhydian Roberts have joined forces for the first time to create a dramatic and spine-tingling concert.
Jonathan, who lives in Leeds, tells me: “We are both from the X Factor and so understand the road to success quite well, plus I have always admired his voice and figured that he and I would make great music together. I just hope fans will feel the same.” Book now via Jonathan’s Facebook page.
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Former EastEnders actress Tracy Ann Oberman tells me about her new role in a classic musical. “I’ve just opened in the legendary Fiddler on the Roof at the Chichester Festival Theatre,” she said. “I’m excited, people think when you’re in a soap that is it, but most soap actresses are multi-talented, and hopefully I am proving this.”
Kelsey Grammer, who starred in TV classics Cheers and Frasier, has been booked to make his London theatre debut in the premiere of American musical ‘Big Fish’. Directed by former EastEnders actor Nigel Harman, Kelsey tells me: “I can carry a tune.” He starred in the musicals La Cage Aux Folles and Finding Neverland in New York, and the new show opens this autumn.
Did you know Poldark star Aidan Turner took up ballroom and Latin American dancing at the age of six, and represented his country for 10 years? He tells me he hasn’t been asked to do Strictly, and if he was, he wouldn’t do it! Or as they all say, “Not quite now, but who knows when the series is over...”
Lee Ryan will make his return to EastEnders. The Blue singer made his Albert Square debut in April as bad lad barman Woody Woodward, leaving in May under a dark cloud. Now Lee is back filming at Elstree and tells me: “This time it’s for a longer stint, but I am just glad to be back and working again.”
Men Behaving Badly star Neil Morrissey has said he “hated” working on the BBC show Waterloo Road. He revealed: “I was angry on set every day, because the quality of the scripts was so awful. And I was tied into it, so it was like being forced.” Others on the show deny this was the case, and enjoyed their stint on the highly-rated drama.
Comedian and mental health campaigner Ruby Wax says she will never live her interview down with Donald Trump. “You have to remember, back then he was just Donald, even though he behaved like he was running the world,” she said. “I know that President Donald, and Madonna will be the ones that people remember the most.”
Maureen Lipman played Lillian Spencer in Coronation Street 15 years ago now, but admits she would love to go back. “I think the show is part of the fabric of life,” she said. “I can see it still going on in some form 100 years from now.” Maureen’s husband of course, Jack, also wrote many of the early episodes.
Former Chancellor Lord Lamont admits his ballroom skills will never be good enough for a TV show. He told me: “I was asked to go on Strictly Come Dancing, and my secretary declined on my behalf at that time. I was a tad annoyed, but could I ever be as good as Ed Balls? I don’t think so.”
Dancing On Ice is to return for the first time in three years. The show, which sees celebrities battling it out to become ice skating experts, will return to our screens in 2018. ITV, having no faith in the show returning, have booked lots of their own ‘stars’ which include Katie Price and an actor from Coronation Street. Torville and Dean will again be on hand to wipe away the tears.
Veteran TV newsreader Richard Whitmore, spent 24 years in the BBC newsroom before leaving to focus on acting and writing. He also found fame via South Pacific, dance routines and singing on The Morecambe & Wise Christmas Show of 1977. Now he has his own book out called ‘Didn’t You Used To Be Richard Whitmore?’. He tells me: “I am still very busy.”
Judge Rinder is moving over to Channel Four for his next series. The ‘judge’, who started life out as a budding actor, admits: “I can’t quite believe how my showbiz career has taken off, but I am loving it and think that this could even lead to some success in the US.”
For 25 years acting legend David Suchet played Agatha Christie’s most famous character, Detective Hercule Poirot. Now he tells me he still misses the role, and wishes in a way that someone would write some new stories. “I think we did them all, and I am so happy we did, but yes he became such a part of me and as such you do miss them. It’s like a friend,” he said.