Queen's Birthday Honours: Karl Jenkins becomes first Welsh composer to be knighted
~ Wales Online ~ 13/06/15 ~
And West End star, singer and radio presenter Michael Ball, whose family is from Mountain Ash, is “chuffed to bits” to gain an OBE for services to musical theatre.
Ball has revealed how his 80-year-old father Tony burst into tears on hearing the news.
“I love these things. For people in our business, it’s all we want is for people to say ‘you are lovely’,” said Ball.
He said he would be taking his “other half”, Cathy, and his father with him to receive his accolade.
Ball’s father received an MBE many years ago and he remembers joining him at the palace when he was given his award.
He said: “I remember going to watch him receive it and he practised forever to get the bow right. On the day, he got it wrong and nearly headbutted her (the Queen). I’m going to get the choreography right.”
Ball made his West End debut in 1985 starring as Marius in Les Miserables. He went on to play the part of Raoul in Phantom Of The Opera two years later.
He has had a varied singing career that has seen him reach top spots in the UK singles chart - with a song from the musical Aspects of Love - and also represent the UK in Eurovision in 1992.
His OBE will be joining a long list of his other accolades, among them two Olivier theatre awards for best actor in a musical.
Ball said of his OBE: “Doing the job makes it worth it, so this is the cherry, the icing on the cake. It’s just a beautiful thing.”