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Michael Ball

Kirsty Young's castaway is singer Michael Ball.

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the actor and singer Michael Ball. For more than 20 years he's been the West End's leading man - winning stacks of awards, building a hugely successful recording career and attracting a large and loyal army of fans.

He was a teenage drop-out, but when a teacher encouraged him to go to drama school he suddenly realised what he wanted to do. Success seemed to come easily to him and he quickly took on leading roles in Les Miserables, Aspects of Love and Phantom of the Opera. But at one point he feared he would have to abandon his career; he was on stage performing in Les Miserables when he suffered his first panic attack. They became so severe that he could barely leave his flat and he hated the thought of anyone looking at him. He shut himself away for nearly a year as he tried to work out what was wrong with him and overcome his anxieties.

In Desert Island Discs he describes how he managed to return to the stage - and reveals the role his partner, Cathy McGowan, has played in rebuilding his confidence.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Favourite track: Sailing By by Ronald Binge
Book: The Sandman series by Neil Gaiman
Luxury: Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough district of New Zealand.

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 7 Mar 2008 09:00

Music Played

Add music you love and enjoy it with My Tracks
  • Camille Saint‐Saëns

    Symphony No. 3 in C minor 'Organ' - 1st movement

    Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic

    • Saint Saëns Organ Symphony.
    • Decca.
  • Mahalia Jackson

    Trouble Of The World

    • Trouble of The World; Tell The World About This.
    • Philips.
  • Dinah Washington

    September In The Rain

    • The Best of Dinah Washington: Mad About The Boy.
    • Mercury.
  • Joni Mitchell


    • Blue.
    • Reprise Records.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Ronald Binge

      Sailing By

      Orchestra: BBC Concert Orchestra

      • The Essential British Light Music Collection.
      • Classic FM Plc.
  • Garth Brooks

    The Dance

    • Shameless.
    • Capitol Records Inc..
  • Ethel Merman


    • Gypsy: Original Broadway Cast.
    • Columbia.
  • Supertramp

    If Everyone Was Listening

    • Crime of the Century.
    • A & M Records.
  • Book Choice

    • The Sandman series - Neil Gaiman

  • Luxury Choice

    • Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough district of New Zealand


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Michael Ball


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