The Voice UK: Interview with Holly Willoughby ‘I haven’t mopped up any tears’

Holly, best known and loved by audiences for hosting This Morning and five series of Dancing on Ice, comes to The Voice with a wealth of presenting experience, also including Celebrity Juice and The Xtra Factor.

When you were invited to co-host The Voice, what was your reaction?

I was so excited! I had watched The Voice in America and I thought it was a fantastic format. I really wanted to be part of The Voice when I heard it was coming to the UK, and so when I got asked, I was really pleased.

As the first show looms, how are you feeling?

Excited. This show is new and fresh and I can’t wait for everyone to see it. It’s going to be one roller coaster of a ride and I can’t wait.

How do you get on with your co-presenter Reggie?

Very well as we have known each other for years and we are mates. Reggie is great. We both started out in kids TV and that is the toughest audience you can face. It’s the best training ground ever.

You’ve already recorded the auditions. What is the talent like?

Amazing. This is such a fantastic opportunity for everyone and the feedback from the coaches has been very positive. It’s been so much fun and everyone involved has been getting excited. Along the way, there will be highs and lows for everyone – but whatever happens for the artists, this is such an amazing chance.

Have you found your motherly instincts coming to the forefront to mop up the contestants’ tears?

No it hasn’t been like that. I haven’t mopped up any tears as nobody has gone on stage and been rubbish or been told that they are ‘deluded, what are they doing here on The Voice?’

What do you think of the four coaches?

Oh my goodness, they are brilliant! They all have so much to offer and what’s great about The Voice format is if more than two coaches are interested in the artists, then the artists have the power – and the coaches then have to explain why they should choose to go in their team. Up until now, I have been hanging out backstage, and so I am looking forward to the live shows when I will see a lot more of them.

Had you met any of the coaches before The Voice UK?

The only person I hadn’t met beforehand was Jessie J. I have worked with/interviewed the others in the past. They are all fantastic. Jessie J is a star. She has incredible energy about her.

Is there anything you are dreading about co-hosting The Voice?

No unless they get me to sing on stage – which thankfully I don’t think will happen!

Have you decided what kind of dresses you will be wearing?

I am not sure yet but I don’t think it will be a ball gown. It’s not that kind of show. I do have a stylist, Sinead, to help me. She does all my styling and she’s brilliant.

The Voice is a big hit in the US. Do you feel under pressure to perform?

Of course there are huge expectations, but I don’t feel under pressure. Reggie and I are the bookends between everything that is going on. I will be nervous five seconds before the first live show. You would be mad if you weren’t but the adrenaline does help.

You are also famous for daytime TV. Will you be taking time off?

No as this show is on every Saturday, I won’t need to. My family do not mind me working at the weekend as they are getting as excited as me about The Voice UK. My co-host on This Morning, Phillip Schofield, was really supportive. He told me that it was a great opportunity and I would be mad not to go for it. I feel lucky to be working in TV with two people I consider as friends – Reggie and Phil.

How do you juggle your busy TV career with family life?

I’ve got a great team behind me and it’s all about making sure I get the right balance. I am very careful with my time and if I feel I am taking too much on, I will pull back. Getting the right work/family balance is very important to me.

Do your children realise they have a famous mummy yet?

Harry says ‘Mummy’ when he sees me on television, but he doesn’t know what it means yet. I know in time he will, but to be honest if it’s not Peppa Pig, I don’t think he is going to be impressed!

Would you describe yourself as ambitious?

Strangely no. People look at me and think I must be – but I like what I do. I like working and I like my job.

You’ve already achieved so much in your career. Is there anything else you still really want to do?

No! I feel so lucky right now. I am very happy. Everything seems perfect.

The Voice premieres on BBC One on Saturday 24th March. Check out our guide to the show and the format here.

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