Sunday 23 February 2020

Interview with Joe McElderry

Talking all things music, touring and his brand new show, SoGlos catches up with X Factor winner Joe McElderry before his return to Cheltenham's Everyman Theatre with Saturday Night at the Movies.

Following his outstanding performance in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoast, X Factor winner Joe McElderry will return to Cheltenham with his solo show, Saturday Night at the Movies on Wednesday 2 August 2017.

SoGlos catches up with the hit singer to discuss the anticipated show, his favourite songs, and whether audiences can expect to hear any Joseph reprisals this time around…

Welcome back to Cheltenham! How did you enjoy your visit with Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat?

I loved it! The audiences were amazing! And I loved the venue so I’m very excited to be bringing my concert back here.

What’s it like to go straight from the musical to a new tour?

Well for me touring with my own show is something I have done for many years, so I always love getting back on the road with my band.

What can audiences expect from your Saturday Night at the Movies album, and show?

It’s just a great family-friendly show that you can come and sing along and dance with! The album features iconic songs from musicals and movies that are great to just put on and sing along with!

You’re joined by special guests for the tour, all of whom have performed in Joseph; will you be performing any songs from the show?

Well without spoiling the surprise I think it would be rude not to have a little Joseph sing-a-long!

Do you have a favourite cover song to perform?

Well, in this show my favourite is either ‘Love Never Dies’ or ‘Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing’.

Which is your favourite new song to perform?

I love performing ‘Gloria’, a track which was written for me by Grahame Goldman of 10cc; we released it especially for Mother’s Day and it’s such a beautiful song!

What’s your favourite thing about touring and promoting your solo music?

I love the interaction between the audience, and being able to chat and interact with people who have come to see the shows.

How has your music evolved through your career so far?

I’ve always just wanted to try different things hence trying classical, pop, and musical theatre – I enjoy the variety.

What are you looking forward to on your return to Cheltenham?

I’m looking forward to meeting and seeing everyone that comes to the show and hopefully I will get to see a bit of Cheltenham!

And finally, can you sum up your upcoming show in a few words?

Fun, family-friendly, and a great night out with great songs!

For more information see Saturday Night at the Movies, call (01242) 572573, or visit directly.

SoGlos spoke to Joe McElderry in May 2017, ahead of his lead performance in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat

How is the tour going so far?

It’s good! We’re in the last stretch now, so there’s hardly any time left. It’s been wonderful, we’ve had absolutely incredible audiences, and it’s just been a really, really fun experience.

Cheltenham’s the last stop on the tour, and we’re going to go out on a high!

Joseph is such a classic play; can you tell audiences what they can expect from this adaptation?

The show is just a great time, a fun, family-friendly show and a great night out for all ages.

That’s the beauty of this show; everyone of all different ages can relate to it. No matter how old, or how young the audiences are, everyone seems to have a great time. And the music from Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber just appeals to everyone!

The majority of the audience must know all of the songs too?

100 per cent! The great thing is that everybody can join in, sing along – it’s just one of those shows.

We do it 10 times a week, and even then you find people singing the songs backstage. You’re like ‘no, don’t sing them backstage, I know them enough’, but you can’t help but sing them too, they’re so catchy!

What is it like to star in a show that’s so iconic; do you feel more pressure?

I feel pressure with anything that I do in front of an audience, because I always want it to be the best it can be, and I always want people to leave having had a great time.

Most of the stuff that I do in my solo career, it’s my material, my music that I’ve created, so the pressure is on me anyway. But when you’re portraying somebody else’s work, there’s an added pressure of wanting to do it justice for them.

You don’t want to go and ruin it, and be awful at it! So you have an added pressure, and a respect of their work as well – especially when it’s people as iconic as Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber, you want to do it properly.

Do you find that you have a big age range in your audiences?

Definitely! Literally, from four years old, all the way up to 70-year olds. It’s incredible the age range that it covers.

You must have a mix between the new generation, and the nostalgic people who love the musical?

Yes… For a lot of people, it’s their first experience of the theatre, so they come back time and time again because it’s their first memory.

People just have such affection for the show. And to be part of something that creates that kind of audience is just a beautiful thing.

Do you have a favourite song to perform from Joseph?

Probably ‘Close Every Door’. That’s my main number in the show.

Is there one thing about performing the play in general that’s a highlight, or is it just the production as a whole that you love?

I enjoy every part of it. The great thing is that each star, and each part of the show has a little story in itself, inside of the songs, so that’s the beauty of it.

You’ve been touring for quite a while; do you enjoy touring, or do you prefer being in one place?

I enjoy it. For me, performing in front of a live audience is what I absolutely love, so to do that every night is wonderful.

I’m used to touring now, and being away from home, travelling around – that kind of hectic schedule. When I’m not doing it, it actually feels stranger than when I am!

Have you been to Cheltenham before?

I played at Cheltenham Town Hall during my solo tour a few years ago, so I’ve been there once before. They were a great audience, so I’m hoping for the same again this time around!

Your career has involved solo music and musicals; what drew you to musicals?

To be honest, I was asked to be part of the show, and I thought it would be a fun project and something that I could have a great tine with – and that was the reason.

It wasn’t a case of thinking ‘I’m now going to do musicals’; more that it looked like something fun and wonderful, and I wanted to give it a go!

Was Joseph one of your favourite musicals, before being cast in it?

I’d never actually been to see the production of it, in terms of as an adult, so I didn’t really know what to expect, stepping into the role.

I knew the music, but it was kind of as much a surprise to me on the first day as it was to everyone else.

That’s nice to not have preconceptions, you must be able to make the role more your own?

100 per cent!

Would you want to do another musical in the future?

We’ll see – I’m open to anything to be honest. If it’s something I think I can do justice to, if it’s a bit of a challenge, and something that means I have to put a bit of hard work in, that’s what draws me to something.

So, we shall see what happens…

What’s the next step with your solo music?

I have a new album out in July – it comes out on the opening night of my solo tour, and we’re going all around the country to promote it, playing all of the songs. So new music… the fifth album is on the way. I can’t wait!

Sound exciting – end one thing, and start another.

Yes, and in terms of releasing music, I’ve had a big break now, about three years, so I’m really excited to get back to that side of things, because that’s where everything began for me. I’m really looking forward to it.

Your career is changing, is there anything you’d particularly like to do?

Just anything that I can enjoy – I think I’ve got to the point now, seven years down the line, I’ve done things that I never, ever imagine I’d do and have really surpassed my expectations of what I thought I’d be doing in my career, which is incredible.

I always just think, let’s see what happens and let’s enjoy the ride of this crazy rollercoaster! You never, ever know what’s around the corner, so enjoy things while you can.

What would you want our readers to know about Joseph?

Just come along – bring your dancing shoes, get ready to tap along and sing along, and just have a good night with all of us.

One final question, could you describe Joseph in a few words?

Fun, crazy, emotional and uplifting!

For more information see Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, call (01242) 572573, or visit

© SoGlos
Thursday 27 July 2017

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