Gareth Gates will return to the smash-hit musical Footloose which will embark on a new UK tour in early 2020.

The former Dancing on Ice finalist will once again play the role of Willard,  having first performed the role in the 2016 UK revival tour. 

Gareth Gates rose to fame through the inaugural series of Pop Idol in 2002, going on to sell over 5 million records worldwide and have hits across the globe. More recently he has enjoyed a successful career on stage, with credits including Les Misérables, Legally Blonde and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. In 2014 Gareth appeared in the final series of Dancing on Ice, and joined boyband 5th Story as part of ITVs second series of The Big Reunion, touring arenas with bands including Blue and Five.

Gareth said “I’m thrilled to be back playing the role of Willard. I had so much fun the first time around that I jumped at the chance to play such an exciting role again. I was born in 1984, the year ‘Footloose’ the movie was first released; I used to watch the movie lots as a kid not knowing some years later I’d be playing the ‘cowboy that can’t dance’ on stages up and down the country. I’m a terrible dancer, so it’s pretty much Life imitating Art!”

Based on the 1984 film starring Kevin Bacon, Footloose: The Musical tells the story of city boy Ren, who moves to a backwater town in rural America where dancing is banned. All hell breaks out as Ren breaks loose and soon has the whole town up on its feet.

Bursting with youthful spirit, dazzling dance and electrifying music, the show features a classic 80’s score including Holding Out for a Hero, Almost Paradise, Let’s Hear it for the Boy and the unforgettable title track, Footloose.

The new UK tour opens on 24 April 2020 at New Wimbledon Theatre and will then travel to Birmingham Alexandra Theatre (4 May), Queen’s Theatre Barnstaple (18 May), Sunderland Empire (25 May), Llandudno Venue Cymru (1 June), Aberdeen His Majesty’s (8June), Brighton Theatre Royal (22 June), Milton Keynes Theatre (29 June), Peterborough New Theatre (6 July), Malvern Theatre (13 July), Blackpool Opera House (20 July), Edinburgh Playhouse (27 July) and Glasgow King’s Theatre (3 August 2020).

Full casting and further date to be announced.