Joe McElderry takes on an iconic but daunting role in Joseph

2009 X Factor winner Joe McElderry becomes Joseph as he dons that coat of many colours in Crawley in the celebrated Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber family musical.

Joe McElderry. Picture by Mark Yeoman
Joe McElderry. Picture by Mark Yeoman

It’s an exciting new venture.

“I have dipped into a few things in terms of musicals, but nothing like a major show like this. This is the first full-on one, and I am very excited about it. I have been asked to do it a few times, but I have never really been able to fit it in until now, and I want to do it. It is such an iconic role with such great songs.”

A string of great performers have filled the Joseph shoes over the years. Joe admits it’s maybe a little daunting.

“You certainly know you have got to live up to it. Everybody loves the show, and there is huge expectation, but at the same time they are all coming to see a show that they have got very warm feelings about. Everybody I have talked to loves the show. That starts you off on the right foot, and I am having great fun. The cast are amazing.

“I have got all the brothers around me, and they are really nice to work with. They are jealous of Joseph. I am supported a lot by them. I am learning the lyrics at the moment, and I love the melodies.”

It’s the latest chapter in a glittering career for Joe who was just 18 when he won the sixth series of X Factor: “It has been an incredible few years. I have loved it. I have loved the variety that I have had and all the different things I have been able to experience. All the things I have done have been so varied.”

Plenty of people win the X Factor or make the finals and then pretty much disappear without trace. Not so Joe.

“I think I have been very lucky to have such an incredible fan base. Without having people that support you and back you up 100 percent of the time, it would be very, very difficult. Also, I have got a wonderful management team and a great team of people that look after me and work very hard behind the scenes.”

Joe’s personality and outlook have naturally kept his feet on the ground too: “I have met a lot of people in this industry that let the whole thing take over their lives. Nobody should let it take over their whole life. I love singing and I love performing and I probably do more work than I should, but I do have a personal private life. I am very, very strict about balancing that with working. It is important to get back into the real world. The whole performing thing is great, but it is not real life!”

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is at the Hawth, Crawley, from Tuesday to Saturday, February 2-6. Tickets on 01293 553636 or

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