Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the North
Graham Clark
Features Writer
12:15 PM 28th September 2021

Jason Donovan Interview

Jason Donovan first came to fame through the hit TV series Neighbours before going on to have a successful pop career in the late 1980’s. Donovan then went on to appear in a series of West End musicals.

He is now about to embark on the Even More Good Reasons Tour which is loosely named on his debut album Ten Good Reasons.

I asked the singer and actor about his forthcoming tour. I found him the perfect interviewee as we could have chatted endlessly - his warm personality came across with ease.

What can we expect from your forthcoming tour?
We have called it the Even More Good Reasons Tour as it is based around my album of the same name. The show will be in two parts - the first part will be tracks from across my musical career, so you can expect some of the songs I’ve sung in the musicals I have been in. The second half will be the Ten Good Reasons album performed in its entirety with a full band.

We are visiting every part of the country too. We are coming to most cities in the north, Leeds I always remember because of the Grand Theatre. I feel passionate about these old theatres because they need to be supported. Not only that the whole economy benefits too such as restaurants and hotels when people visit these theatres.

You worked with Stock, Aitken and Waterman at the start of your musical career, did they write the songs specifically with you in mind?
Some of the songs at the start were off the shelf, so to speak, but once success happened they tended to write the songs that would fit me. You couldn’t mess with their success - at that time in the late 1980’s they were the hottest writing and production team in the pop world.

Why did you stop working with them?
It came to a natural end, pop careers have a natural shelf life and mine had come to an end. The opportunity came up to work with Andrew Lloyd Webber and it re-invented my career - it gave me credibility. It was a big jump for me at the time.

You still have a big connection with the musical Priscilla - Queen of the Desert?
I do as I am co-producing it. When I was in the show it was great fun, I think the reason why the show is so popular is because it is a magical tale of diversity with these three misfits. I can tell you though that when I was in the show that for me there was a lot less work involved than playing the Pharaoh in Joseph at the Palladium in London, which was a lot harder for me.

Do you have a favourite musical show you have starred in?
Priscilla is definitely up there, Joseph changed a lot of things for me, it’s hard to say really, I liked the Palladium shows but we were doing eight shows a week which was quite taxing, I’m not getting any younger either!

How do you feel about performing in your first pantomime later this year?
Very excited - there is a craft to pantomime and it will be interesting to find the key to the door, so to speak. I will be in Goldilocks and the Three Bears at the Birmingham Hippodrome with Matt Slack - he is a legend in the Midlands. I met him the other day for a photo shoot for the panto, he seemed very warm but you did say that I had to keep my eyes and ears open as he is very quick off the mark! Thanks for the Heads Up.

How is your back injury after appearing on Dancing On Ice?
I’m ok now, thank you. I enjoyed the process leading up to the show, but I didn’t enjoy the live shows as it was very challenging. I try to keep myself fit as it is important in my line of work both mentally and physically so I eat well, try not to drink too much and I try to sing every day too.

Do you still keep in touch with Kylie?
We do touch base, but we are not joined together at the hip. We exchange WhatsApp messages every now again. She has worked hard to be where she is - she is like the Duracell Bunny, she never stops.

What motivates you to keep on working?
School Fees! No really I love my job, I am passionate about what I do, I am lucky enough to be able to do a job I enjoy doing.

You have a very loyal fanbase, which in music terms is not always the case.
Yes, they are very loyal, my fans have given me a great life. I have tried to re-invent myself over the years and they have stuck with me which I do not take for granted.

Do you still follow the charts?
I am fascinated by pop music - it keeps me young though my kids keep me updated with what’s going on. I am a big Coldplay fan though I love a good pop song much like I did in the late 80’s, which was pure pop though my love of music transcends all styles such as jazz and a bit of classical too.

Tour dates:
9 October - Hull Bonus Arena
13 October - Gateshead Sage
15 October - Leeds First Direct Arena
16 October - Manchester Apollo
20 October - Scarborough Spa
15 November - Liverpool Philharmonic
17 November - Blackpool Opera House
20 November - Sheffield City Hall
23 November - Scunthorpe- Baths Hall
3 December - Darlington Hippodrome
28 February - York Barbican