When Gareth Gates was asked to dress up as a woman for Let’s Sing and Dance for Comic Relief, he had some conditions.
It was nothing to do with skirt length or amount of make-up he’d be wearing. No, he said yes to performing a drag tribute to Girls Aloud – on the proviso that he could play Cheryl.
“When they asked me to do it I said, ‘Yes, if I can be Cheryl!’” Gareth tells RadioTimes.com about being a part of Boys Allowed for this charity performance. “I’m hoping to do her proud. I’ll be channeling my inner Cheryl on the night that’s for sure. I’m really dedicated and I want it to be perfect – so I’ll do anything that needs to be done.”
On Saturday night, Gareth is forming a super group with Blue’s Duncan James, S Club 7’s Jon Lee, 5ive’s Ritchie Neville and Phats & Small’s Ben Ofoedu as they perform Girls Aloud hit Biology.
However, Gareth admits that he hadn’t actually seen the Girls Aloud video before now. “I’ll be honest I actually hadn’t watched it at all before I started – I just wanted to go in and learn the steps from scratch. We’ve got their choreographer teaching us, so we’ve got it spot on!”
The bad news is, however, that it looks like we’re going to have to get our Boys Allowed fix on Saturday as a life for the band beyond this weekend looks unlikely.
Asked whether Boys Allowed would want to stay together and make new music as a five-piece, Gareth said: “We’ve not even talked about that – and we are all busy so I don’t know how that would work.
“I’m straight into an Easter Panto, then Footloose the musical tour and then Christmas Panto. So I’m booked up until January. But if everyone loves it, who knows? Maybe the odd performance; the important thing is we are all doing this for an amazing charity so we will do all we can.”
Gareth has already posted a picture of himself online walking in heels, while bandmate Ritchie has also shared an image of him wearing a red bra and getting into drag.
“I dressed up as a woman for fancy dress before and actually I quite enjoyed it,” he says. “It’s was easy at first, but after a few hours my toes were killing me. These heels aren’t too high, so I think I’ll be OK.
“I love performing so I’m not really nervous about it at all really,” he adds. “I think we’ve got to walk down stairs in heels! That’s going to be a challenge. Apart from that I think I’ll be fine – it’s not my first time!”
Let’s Sing and Dance for Comic Relief airs on Saturday 11 March at 6.45pm on BBC1