Favourite Moment Onstage?
I will never forget when I was fortunate enough to perform at the Royal Albert Hall for the Festival of Remembrance — standing in the centre of the remarkable space, with Her Majesty, The Queen in attendance. I will cherish this moment forever!
Best Pinch Yourself Moment?
When I was at an ITV anniversary party, just following our appearance in the XFactor with G4. It was crazy being greeted by name by so many familiar faces I had watched on the TV myself for years was so odd! The funniest moment that night though, was when I went to the urinals and was greeted with a “hey Jonathan” from the adjacent faculty by Jeromy Beadle. He was a personality that had lit up our lounge, for years, with his brilliantly entertaining TV shows. I almost tiddled on the floor accidentally due to the shock.
I would have to say, Nessun Dorma. It is an aria that connects with all ages regardless of nationality. There is something magical whenever I hear this performed by others, and it is extra special when I sing it myself during a show.
Moment That Changed Your Life?
The XFactor was a remarkable moment in my life and an experience that transformed my life forever. The show was very intense and certainly challenged every part of me physically and mentally, but the way that the nation embraced G4 was extraordinary.
Favourite Country To Perform?
The audiences vary massively throughout the world. The American audiences are extremely vocal throughout, and it’s super fun to entertain them. South Korean audiences are the polar opposite and sit almost silently after each song. Yet, they scream and wave profusely when you offer the peace sign at any time during the show, also security is undoubtedly needed to control them from literally leaping over the table to grab you at a post-show signing. The British audiences are wonderful throughout but do traditionally become more relaxed and vocal the further north that you perform. A favoured place for me has always been Newcastle or anywhere in Scotland.
Favourite Venue To Perform?
That is is super easy to answer. The Royal Albert Hall. What a building, auditorium and electric audience. I have been fortunate enough to perform there many times over my career. Once I trod their boards three times in just two weeks for different concerts.
Favourite Part Of The World?
I have visited many of the worlds most amazing locations through my Cruise Ship travels and vacations, and I believe that we are deeply blessed to live on such a beautiful and varied planet! I adore the Far East and would list Malaysia as one of my favourite places on Earth. Hong Kong blows me away every time I have visited. South America was so vibrant, and seeing the Brazilian array of delicious meats sizzling away at the various open markets and restaurants still makes my mouth water. But my all-time favourite place on Earth has to be right here at home, sat amongst my wife and children on the sofa with a cosy blanket wrapped over us all.
Worst Thing About Coronavirus (COVID-19)?
The dreadful number of deaths has been deeply upsetting, and it is truly tragic to have lost so many people before their time. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of those who have been directly affected by this harmful virus. Let’s also remember the devastating effect that the pandemic has had for multiple other clinical activities, and I also feel acutely aware that this has been hugely damaging for thousands of other people who suffer from other illnesses and have had their treatments postponed or cancelled. I just hope that we can keep the transmission rate low, to enable the remarkable work of the NHS to continue offering its world-leading care and will allow them to catch up with this backlog and ensure that it is not overrun by Coronavirus (COVID-19) once again in the coming months.
Best Thing About Lockdown?
Family time together without as many distractions. It’s been a strange time for us all in so many different ways but to be able to hang out as a family for many months on end has been deeply cherished. Yes, homeschooling has been a challenge, thankfully Debbie has done so well, educating all three of us during this time!
Worst Thing About Lockdown?
The isolation of relatives and friends and the lack of personal contact with many of those you love. Fortunately, this Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic occurred when we had access to technologies offering FaceTime and Zoom chats. Without this visual contact with others, I believe it would have felt even harder for everyone, but more vitally, those who here been isolating alone.
What Does the Future Look Like?
The future is rather unknown professionally right now…?!?! The entertainment industry is seeing a very bleak outlook, and it is sadly extremely likely that many remarkable performers and technical staff will be forced to diversify and possibly ultimately change careers causing a catastrophic loss to the industry. The well needed governmental fiscal bailout packages will hopefully enable the fabulous venues of our nation to survive, but it is undoubtedly going to take many years for the industry to rise once again in any way similar to pre lockdown. I just sincerely hope that the remarkable wealth of talent and the super talented technical staff are still available to staff and perform on these stages once again when the time comes…
Virtual or Live Performance?
I adore performing live for audiences and perhaps never realised how truly fortunate I was to be able to do this as a career. Following the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic it has been devastating to see so many tour dates postponed or cancelled. There is nothing like the energy created through all being in the same space at the same time, but sadly this cannot happen in the same way for many months and possibly years ahead. I am thrilled that we have, however, developed an exciting new platform to still enable us to share music virtually directly to our fans. It’s certainly different to perform in an empty remote concert stage! Not hearing the audience applause after each song is very odd, but knowing the fans are there, via their comments flooding in on the chat feed enables me to visualise their happy faces, albeit while they are sat at home on their sofa rather than congregated together in unity at a venue. It is likely to be the performance medium of our ‘new normal’, and I hope it can continue to grow, to enable many other artists to continue to share their music over the coming months ahead.
Starter or Dessert? Dessert.
Spicy or Mild? Spice Lover!
Hot or Cold? Depends on the weather.
Fish or Chicken? Fish.
Wine or Beer? There’s a time for both…
Gin or Tonic? LOL – Both of course!
BBQ or Sandwich? BBQ all the way.
Plane or Ferry? I love a ferry crossing.
France or Spain? France.
Bath or Shower? Shower.
Dogs or Cats? Dogs, although I also love cats.
Box Set or Movie? Box Sets are so addictive!
Sea or Pool? Sea, all the way.
This show was broadcast on the 17th of July 2020 and it is now available On-Demand. You can find out more by clicking here.