Shayne Ward has hinted that his Corrie character Aidan Connor will have a hot romance with another Weatherfield resident following his arrival next week.
“I’m told he might have a love interest not too far down the line, so I’m anticipating that there might be the odd scene of me coming topless out of the bedroom,” says the former X Factor winner. Not that the idea of going without his shirt bothers him. “I keep in shape in any way I can. And after all, if they told me to do some topless scenes, I’d have to make sure I felt confident.”
But it’s not just the prospect of love that sees Aidan opt to stay in town. The main reason the businessman has hit the cobbles is to save Underworld after a wayward Carla brings it to the brink of collapse. Nick and Aidan’s cousin Michelle call him up after they grow increasingly concerned at how Carla’s gambling addiction is affecting the business. But will Aidan’s efforts be appreciated?
“I reckon some people on the Street will be asking who Aidan thinks he is! Particularly business-minded people,” Ward admits. “But I’m looking forward to Aidan having some run-ins with some familiar faces. I already know about one rivalry he is going to have with another man on the street. But it’s good that Aidan’s around – it’s been a while since we had a Connor man on the cobbles, so I think it’s time.”
For the 30-year-old singer, the chance to star on Corrie was impossible to turn down. He describes the job as “a dream” and says that he’s always been a massive fan of the show.
“It’s mind-boggling that I’m here,” he says. “When I found out I’d got the part, I was staying in my old bedroom at my mum’s house. As soon as I got the news, I knocked on her bedroom door. I only had my boxers on at the time, but I said, ‘I’m sorry mum, but I’ve just got to come in’. And I sat on the end of her bed and told her. The smile on her face was incredible.”
As for what kind of character Aidan is, Shayne tells us: “He’s a nice guy and he’s got some charisma and charm. But, at the same time, you certainly don’t want to cross a Connor. We can take the mick out of each other, but if people outside the family do the same, then they won’t stand for it. So that’s definitely the kind of character he is. It’s going to be fun to see what the writers come up with for him. He could become a little bit nasty – who knows?”
It’s now been ten years since Ward won the second series of The X Factor, a victory that led to four albums, an appearance as a contestant on Dancing on Ice and a stint with 1980s-themed musical Rock of Ages in London’s West End. But how does his first audition in front of Simon Cowell compare to his debut on Corrie?
“They were both nerve-wracking experiences but in very different ways. Back in the day, on the very first live show, I was only 21. There were three judges and millions at home watching. All you can think is, ‘Don’t mess up’.
“When I arrived at Coronation Street, I was standing in front of well-established actors who I’ve been watching on TV for years. All that was running through my head was, ‘Is this even real?!’ It is quite chilled here, but I don’t think it’ll sink in for a very long time.”
You can watch a 60-second rundown of next week’s episodes of Coronation Street below.
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