Search This Blog

Justin Fletcher

March 2013
I KNEW I wanted to work in children’s entertainment when I was in my third year at drama school.

I had some good advice from Phillip Schofield, who told me to put a show reel together. At the time he was presenting in the broom cupboard with Gordon the Gopher.
So I did that and put it out there. Within a couple of weeks I had an audition at ITV and got the job. It was on a show called Fun Song Factory and away I went. I’ve been involved with children’s television and theatre ever since.
I was taught by the three ‘c’s of children’s presenting which is contact, clarity and commitment. It’s about engaging with the audience all the time.
I’m in Berkshire now and I’d like to have a family of my own. In fact, I am planning some time off so I can have a bit more of a family life but this year is so busy.
This week we released the new album The Best Of Friends, which is our third album for children.
People are often surprised that it was written with a guy who used to be a member of David Bowie’s band The Spiders From Mars. But he has an amazing track record as a producer and songwriter, including some big hits for The Nolans, Bros and Ant and Dec, when they were known as PJ and Duncan.
He worked on my first album, Hands Up and we got along very well. He has a fantastic team at his studio who co-wrote, produced and engineered that so he was the natural choice to work with again.
It’s a real party album that doesn’t really let up. It’s a great funky pop album for children with some classic songs from The Wizard of Oz and Mary Poppins. We always ask live audiences what their favourites are so we included them on the album.
We’re also working on the Justin and Friends tour that will be coming to Nottingham in April.
It’s a kind of rock ‘n’ roll show for families.
It’s the first time I’ve showcased my three CBeebies shows under one roof.
There’s Something Special, which is known mainly for the Mister Tumble character. And we teach Makaton sign language to children with learning difficulties, so that’s going to be on the show along with the Tumble family.
We also have Gigglebiz, which is a sketch show, with characters such as Nana Knickerbockers, Lost Pirate, Arthur Sleep, Keith Fit... the list goes on; there are around 20 characters.
And the third show is Justin’s House, where we will open the arena show.
And along with that we have all the supporting characters like Robert The Robot and Little Monster, plus the other presenters Andy Day, Katy Ashworth and Nina from Nina and the Neurons.
There are 60 people on the road and we have a great time but it always goes so fast. It’s a two week tour but we’re playing an arena every day and I always find that you blink and it’s over.
After that there’s a new series of Gigglebiz that we start shooting in May, then a new series of Something Special, celebrating our tenth anniversary.
Then it’s panto time for me. I’ve not done it in Nottingham yet but I am looking forward to going back there with this show.
We don’t get a huge amount of time on tour to see the sights but I’m quite an early bird so I tend to get up early and have a look around. I have very fond memories of playing Nottingham.
In an arena you really have to bump your performance up because you are playing to six or seven thousand people at each show but you have the adrenalin pumping because you’re riding on the children’s energy levels.
Quite often this is the first theatrical experience that they’ve had, so they have no inhibitions. They love jumping up and down and singing along. It’s infectious.

Justin and Friends comes to the Capital FM Arena for two shows on April 12. Tickets are priced from £13, call 0843 373 3000 or go to

No comments:

Post a Comment