The lovely Emma Wil­lis

Emma Wil­lis on her sur­prise at be­com­ing a tv star, her fears that it could all end and how she stopped her daugh­ter from tak­ing part in The Voice Kids...

TV Times - - My TV Times Week - The Voice Kids Satur­day / ITV / 7.30Pm Victoria Wil­son

As host of itv’s The Voice Kids, it seems Emma Wil­lis is more ner­vous than many of the pint-sized singers au­di­tion­ing for the show.

‘I al­ways get in­vested and I kind of get as car­ried away with it as the con­tes­tants do,’ says Emma, 41, mum to Is­abelle, eight, Ace, five, and one-year-old Trixie. ‘Be­ing a mum, you’re con­stantly won­der­ing, “What if that was my child up there?” That in it­self re­ally gets to me and I’m kind of will­ing them on even more.’

As the blind au­di­tions con­tinue this week, more young hope­fuls – aged be­tween seven and 14 – will be singing their hearts out in the hope that coaches, Danny Jones and Pixie Lott will like what they hear enough to hit their but­ton and turn those big, red chairs around.

Here the TV pre­sen­ter tells us about the show, her rise to fame and her own singing abil­i­ties...

Do you ever have ‘pinch your­self’ mo­ments when you think about what you’ve achieved?

Ev­ery sin­gle day. And ev­ery sin­gle day I’m wait­ing for it to end. I have

that aw­ful ‘im­pos­tor syn­drome’ that’s be­com­ing a pop­u­lar phrase at the minute. I just think I’m wing­ing it, con­stantly! So I’m ready for it to end – al­though I re­ally hope it doesn’t.

How does fronting The Voice

Kids com­pare to The Voice UK?

It sort of feels like do­ing my first se­ries of The Voice UK all over again. Al­though it’s essen­tially the same show, my mind­set had to change be­cause we’re deal­ing with lit­tle peo­ple, so I knew I needed to be ex­tremely sen­si­tive. You’ve got to be sen­si­tive around grown-ups as well, but they’ve lived a lit­tle bit more. I didn’t know what to ex­pect but this show feels re­ally ex­cit­ing, new and like the be­gin­ning again.

You’re al­ways on hand to of­fer sup­port be­hind the scenes at the blind au­di­tions. Have you been get­ting more emo­tional on this show be­cause kids are in­volved? Def­i­nitely. Not just in terms of whether they would get a turn from one of the coaches or not, but some of the sto­ries we hear got to me. Be­cause they’re kids, you just want to pro­tect them. I’m just a sucker, I cry at the grown-up ver­sion, so putting kids on the show meant it was lit­er­ally wa­ter­works ev­ery­day! It’s pos­i­tive as well, with the ex­cite­ment and joy when they get a turn. I love ev­ery sec­ond of it.

Do you find the par­ents are more ner­vous than the kids? Kids are fear­less and in­no­cent, whereas grown-ups are a bit more highly strung. We were wor­ried how the kids would cope with not get­ting a turn, but, all in all, they’re han­dling them­selves re­ally well. We’ve had a few tears.

What do coaches Danny Jones and Pixie Lott bring to the show? Danny’s been do­ing this job since he was 15 or 16, so he knows what it’s like to have grown up in the mu­sic in­dus­try. Sim­i­larly, Pixie has been do­ing it since she was re­ally young. They’re both very nur­tur­ing, en­cour­ag­ing and have in­vested in the show. Danny and have the most fan­tas­tic re­la­tion­ship, too. They adore each other; it’s a to­tal bro­mance. I love it, it’s great to watch.

You know Danny re­ally well from be­ing in Mc­busted with your hus­band Matt, 34, so has it been nice work­ing with him? It’s been amaz­ing work­ing with him. Danny’s one of the nicest hu­man be­ings you would ever wish to meet and he adores chil­dren.

As the host of a singing show, are we ever likely to catch you burst­ing into song your­self?

Ha, ha! Maybe karaoke very late at night when I’m drunk, but there will def­i­nitely be no cam­eras around or record­ing equip­ment. Do I like a bit of a sing-song? Oh, God yeah. Can I sing? Ab­so­lutely not!

As well as The Voice Kids, you’re hosting Big Brother on C5, which has a more adult theme. Is it nice that your own kids can watch what you’re do­ing on ITV? Yes, it’s lovely. They watch The Voice UK any­way, but I think they will be even more into this ver­sion given that it fea­tures kids. They

can’t watch Big Brother – the only thing they know about it is the theme mu­sic – but they love The Voice es­pe­cially my el­dest, Is­abelle.

Have Is­abelle or Ace shown any signs of want­ing to be tele­vi­sion pre­sen­ter like you, or a mu­si­cian like Matt? Is­abelle did ask me if she could au­di­tion for this show and I told her she wasn’t old enough, even though she is. But I’m pretty sure the rules don’t al­low the host’s daugh­ter to get fast-tracked! She wants to be some­thing dif­fer­ent ev­ery day; first she wants to be a teacher, then she wants to be a vet, then she wants to be a make-up artist. Her lat­est thing is, ‘I’d like to do what Daddy does’. But says she doesn’t want to play bass gui­tar! She loves per­form­ing, though, and she plays the pi­ano, but who knows what kids want to do – they change their minds ev­ery five min­utes, don’t they?

Find­ing a voice: Emma with Will, Pixie and Danny

Kids are fear­less and in­no­cent, whereas grown-ups

are a bit more highly strung!

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