Michael Ball: ‘You won’t get me in a banana suit!’

West End star Michael Ball brightens up weekday afternoons with his brand-new chat show at 3pm Monday-Friday…

How do you feel about hosting your own teatime chat show?

“I’m excited, but also really nervous. Hosting This Morning and other shows gave me an idea of how telly works and that’s given me the confidence to do this. Doing five shows a week for a six-week run is going be a steep learning curve, but I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

You’re best known for your theatre work. Will this be a part of the show?

“There’s been a huge resurgence in the musical theatre genre thanks to shows like Glee. Throughout the series, there will be items on musical theatre and I’ll certainly be singing myself. But it’s not a musical theatre show at all.”

So, what else can viewers expect from the show?

“It’ll be a real afternoon treat with celebrities, music, cooking and topical discussion. We’ll be meeting some interesting people – not just celebrities, but Britain’s unsung heroes; real people with stories to tell. An endless stream of celebrities plugging their next project is not the most exciting telly for me.”

Who would your ideal guest be?

“It would be easy to say Julia Roberts, Tom Cruise or Angelina Jolie, but I think my ideal guest would be Camilla Parker Bowles. She’s had a fascinating life and I’d have so many questions. I think she’d be really funny, too!”

We hear there are going to be some challenges…

“Both my guests and I will take part in challenges, a bit like The Generation Game. I’ll have a go at most things, but I don’t like pain. Playing Edna in Hairspray means I love dressing up – but you won’t get me in a banana suit!”

You recently appeared as a guest judge on Dancing on Ice. Would you ever be a contestant on a reality show?

“I think shows like Dancing on Ice, X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent make great telly, but I’d never want to be contestant; I’m far too insecure and competitive. Also, working in theatre, you’re being judged all the time – and I’d rather not be told I’m awful in front of millions of people!”

*The Michael Ball Show can be seen weekdays at 3pm on ITV1