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Meet our new Joseph!  
We catch up with our new leading man - a very busy Gareth Gates - as he takes on his new role...

Have you ever googled yourself?
Many times, yeah. I often use that to see reviews of shows, what people are saying about me. However I don’t really read many articles about myself, it’s just the way that I’ve always been. Recently though, yeah, I have often googled myself, mainly to see pictures within articles, not necessarily to read the text as such.

Are you quite active online?
Yeah, I’m involved in my MySpace page a fair bit but it is something that I need to get a little bit more involved in. I love that interaction with fans of my music, fans of this show… it’s a fantastic medium within which to reach people.

Are you superstitious?  Do you have any rituals before a performance?
No, I tend to shy away from that. I always say a little prayer just to make sure that everything goes OK. Apart from that, no. The lads however in the show, the brothers, they always have this thing where they salute the Joseph from the wings – so I’m up on the lollipop lift and they all wave… [Gareth gives a demonstration of the brothers’ salute]. Not sure whether that’s a new thing or if it’s just something they’ve done since I’ve been Joseph… but they always seem to do it and I always salute back.

Do you have any phobias?
Not particularly, no. The only thing I don’t like is rats… and mice too!

How would you like to spend your perfect day off?
These days, sleeping for most of it I think! I’ve been working so hard. And we’ve just recently bought a new house and so doing work on that, shopping for furniture, buying bits and pieces for the house…getting ready for the baby [Gareth’s wife is expecting their first child]. The nursery’s pretty much ready and finished.

When’s the baby due?
12th April – so not long. 2 months left!

What’s the last thing you saw at the cinema?
Haven’t been to the cinema for a while. Probably the last Batman film – The Dark Knight.

Where would you like to be in 5 years time?
Well I made a decision in my mind certainly, now that I’m in musical theatre, which is something I’ve always really wanted to do and I’d love to spend the next few years – three, four, five years – within musical theatre… what shows and things I really don’t know yet. However now that I’m in this fantastic experience I’d love to get to learn more and more about it. Hopefully in a big West End show somewhere!

Do you have a dream role?
Well I’ve always wanted to be in Phantom. I’m maybe a bit young for the Phantom himself yet, but Raoul… those sorts of shows.

Is there anything you’re worried about happening in Joseph?
Only falling off the lift at the end! On the music side of things… well, it was actually Joseph that was the very reason that I got into music, that I discovered I was able to sing. At the age of eight, my first school was doing a production of Joseph and I went along to the auditions, not really knowing what to expect or anything. Once my voice was heard though, they gave me the part of Joseph, and ever since then I learnt to play instruments and I got really involved in music in many different ways, so it’s because of Joseph that I first got into music and through that I ended up knowing all the songs. So the music side of things in this show is not so much of a worry… the staging of the show though is fairly complex as well, knowing where to be, but I’ve done several shows now.

Do you get nervous before going onstage?
My opening night on Monday [9th February], I was very nervous. More so than Friday [6th February when Gareth came onstage for his first live show] – Friday I was nervous because it was the first time we’d run the whole show, however it wasn’t my official opening night so even if I did make a few mistakes it was always going to be OK. On Monday it was more that my family was in, all my friends… I was nervous what all my mates would say after they’d seen me in the loin cloth! But it went really well and as the show went on I got more and more comfortable with the part and the songs and the response of the crowd, which was really fantastic as well.

Regarding the loin cloth… did you have to do a lot of preparation for that or where you fairly comfortable with how you looked?
No, I was really really nervous about that! Naturally I’m really skinny and I didn’t want to look hideous in a loin cloth. I spent the past month certainly every night at the gym… now I feel fairly comfortable. I’m a lot more ripped than I’ve ever been!

Have you been in the tanning booth [backstage] yet?
No, I’m supposed to have my first go tonight or tomorrow… I have been on the odd sunbed though!

If your house was on fire and you had to grab one thing – what would it be?
Maybe my laptop… that’s my life. It’s the main way that I work, it has all my music on there, photos, videos that I’ve made… everything.

What is your favourite track of the moment on your iPod?
As I’ve entered into this musical theatre world, recently I’ve really been listening to a lot of soundtracks for musicals. I’m listening to Wicked at the minute, I love tracks like “Defying Gravity,” or “Dancing Through Life,” those sorts of songs.

Have you seen Wicked?
Yeah, it’s an awesome show.

Who would play you in the story of your life?
I don’t know. Maybe someone really handsome… and really ripped… and tanned!

Who’s your biggest fan?
I think it has to be my Mum. She’s obviously been there from day one, even when I wasn’t a face or a name, and she’s always been a massive fan – even when I used to sing in school concerts or plays here and there. It’s the same with all my family, my dad and my sisters, they’ve all really really supported everything I’ve wanted to do in life which has really been an amazing help.

Who would make you starstruck if you met them?
I am very lucky and I’ve met some fairly big names. When I first met George Michael I was really in awe of him. I don’t know – I haven’t ever met Michael Jackson, I think I’d be really starstruck around that calibre of star.

What’s your favourite item of clothing?
Not sure – probably my Uggs at the minute – they keep me nice and warm!

What’s the last musical (apart from Joseph) you’ve seen?
I was in Vegas – Phantom was actually the last show that I went to see. I was out there at the end of June and July and yeah, went to see Phantom there. I absolutely love it there – love it. The fact that it’s so fast and happening, there’s always so many places to go, always somewhere open for a drink, I really really enjoyed it.

Where’s your favourite place to go in London?
A place called Home House – it’s a really lovely place. I’m a member there and if I have work in and around the centre of town and I have a spare half hour I love to just go there and read a paper and relax. It’s certainly one of my little havens.

Do you get to go home [to Bradford] to see your family very much?
I’ve been living in London, I’ve been based in London for about 7-and-a-half years now, however I’d never call London home. Any opportunity I get to go home I do – it’s where my family live, it’s where I know best, so the odd day here and there I’ll shoot up to Bradford.

If “Any Dream Will Do”… have you got any dreams you would still like to fulfil?
Most of my life-long dreams are really starting to come true now. I’m now about to start a family, that’s a life time ambition of mine – I’m from a big family myself and I’d love to have lots of kids, so we’ve already started that dream!  And just happiness, you know.

If you weren’t a singer, what job would you be doing now?
I really don’t know… music and singing’s always been my life, I’ve never really done anything else. At the age of 12 I was very involved in music and in sports as well and I sort of had to make a decision on which path I wanted to follow and it was music that I followed. If I hadn’t have chosen music, maybe sports… but music is my passion in life, it’s what I do best.

What sports did you play?
I really love to play football. The boys here [in Joseph] play on a Friday, but whether or not I’d have made it as a footballer I really don’t know!


Beach bum or culture vulture?
Beach bum – I love a tan, as you can see!

Spring or Autumn?
Erm… Autumn

Tea or coffee?
Tea – I’m very allergic to coffee.

PC or Mac?
Mac all the way!

Cats or Dogs?

Continental or full English?
Full English.

Matinee or Evening?

X Factor or Strictly Come Dancing?
X Factor.

Simon Cowell or Louis Walsh?
Simon Cowell, any day…

myspace or facebook?
I’ve only just joined Facebook, so I’ll say that…

Posted on: 20th February 2009

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