ITV's The Big Reunion continues on ITV2 tonight, telling the story of B*Witched.
“(Edele) was definitely the spokesperson, the leader, the lead singer. The other band members kind of felt what’s the point of being in this situation, being in this band if we’re not contributing to it.” Sinead, B*Witched.
“I had so much hatred for her (Heavenli) for what she did. Its frustrating when its not your fault, when you haven’t messed up your life, when someone else has messed up your life.”
Ten years after they ruled pop, for one night only, six chart-topping groups will be reunited in an unmissable TV event.
The Big Reunion will follow their every step, as their worlds are turned upside down after years away from the spotlight. During the series, viewers will see the groups reunited for the first time since they split. For some it’s the chance to relive their dream, for others it may open old wounds as they prepare to face demons they thought they had buried forever.
At their peak, these acts dominated UK pop over a 10-year period from the mid nineties, selling millions of singles, albums and achieving multiple number 1’s. Now they will come together for the first time in a decade, to put on the show of their lives.
The cameras will capture the highs and lows, tears and tantrums as each of the bands hope they can once again discover the magic that helped them adorn magazine covers, sell out multiple arena tours and top the charts back in their heyday.
The Big Reunion, made by ITV Studios, will delve into the lives of these former pop heroes, exploring what happened after they slipped out of the charts. Some have remained in the celebrity spotlight, whilst others left their showbiz lives behind to pursue new careers as diverse as a stilt walker, a midwife, a teacher, a farmer and a photographer.
Each band will have just two weeks of intense rehearsals before they step back onto the stage to perform once again in front of thousands of fans.
Featuring candid interviews, in the next instalment it’s the turn Irish pop sensations B*Witched and R&B stars The Honeyz to reveal the highs and lows of life as a popstar.
Irish stars B*Witched exploded into the charts in 1998 with their unique brand of pop and their ‘double denim uniform’. Their debut single C’est La Vie hit the top spot and band member, twins Edele and Keavy and friends, Sinead and Lindsey were catapulted into pop stardom.
Sinead said, “I remember we got the video for C’est La Vie and my face dropped and Edele’s face dropped. This is like bubble gum with extra bubbles on the top and that was a shock.”
Edele added, “I was like, ‘Oh my God what is that? Look at the state of us.’’
Keavy continued, “We were young, energetic, fun and that was what the video was about.”
Whilst the girls saw themselves as a four piece, it was Edele who was thrust into centre stage, singing lead vocals on their hit singles.
Lindsey confessed, “When we first started as a group the lead was shared equally, then we met our producer and a decision was made that there would be a lead singer and that was going to be Edele. Keavy, Sinead and I were to sing the backing vocals. That was hard.”
Sinead added, “(Edele) was definitely the spokesperson, the leader, the lead singer, she was definitely the one. They (the other band members) kind of felt what’s the point of being in this situation, being in this band if we’re not contributing to it. It must be really difficult watching your sister, your twin, knowing that the two of you sing very similar and seeing her being out there. Keavy found it really hard to deal with that. ”
Edele admitted, “I know that upset the others, it didn’t upset me obviously because I was enjoying it. From as far back as I can remember all I wanted to be was a singer and now I was becoming one, so that was all that mattered to me. I wouldn’t have stepped back from my position because I enjoyed being in it.”
Whilst Keavy concluded, “I was definitely sad about it, I very much felt like I was in my twin’s shadow which is why I was the dancer, why I was the joker because I just wanted to be seen. I wanted to make sure that people actually knew there was two of us with the same face. ”
The girls secured four consecutive number one hits from their debut album putting them into the record books.
Lindsey, “We were the first girl group to have their first four singles go straight in at number one. We broke records.”
Keavy, “As amazing as that it is, its incredible pressure as well because we now know all we’ve done since we started was have this platform of number ones so in the back of your mind is if we dip at all that’s it we’re on our way out.”
The band were topping the charts both in the UK and around the world, including America, but unbeknown to the other girls, one member of the group was struggling to cope with the pressures of fame.
Keavy admits, “I didn’t know how to reach out, I didn’t know how to tell someone that things weren’t ok. We had a week’s holiday and I went to Portugal with my family and my best friends and that’s when I really started to notice something was really wrong. It was like, ‘Oh your getting brown, you look lovely today’, and in my head my reply was, ‘So what’. I just went, ‘I can’t do it anymore.’ I phoned Edele from my hotel room, I couldn’t even talk to her.’ I was sobbing, I just lost it. Edele said to me, ‘you need help.’ It was like a relief that she said it to me”
An emotional Edele remembers, “I came to her (Keavy’s) room and she was in such a state. What upset me at this point was I hadn’t seen this before, she had to tell me. She was struggling so much, she had to call me into her room and tell me how much she is struggling. That really upset me because we’re so close and we’re twins and I haven’t got time to notice my sister is really struggling, that’s what I felt like.”
Edele continues, “I rang everybody and I said, ‘Keavy is going away for three weeks, end of story, she’s gone and I don’t care what any of you say, what matters is that Keavy is shattered right now.’ Nobody seemed to care about that and it just made me realise that we weren’t people. To these people we were a product and their product was being tampered with as far as they were concerned.”
The four piece released their next single, Jesse Hold On which reached number four in the charts. A change of image saw the band lose their ‘denim’ and adopt a sexier look.
Keavy admits, “The whole change of image was the wrong choice. It was like, ‘Lets do a sexy thing,’ I don’t know how to do that, I don’t want to do that. It was never who we were.”
Sinead adds, “I think the fans got confused, it just didn’t work.”
Lindsey says, “I remember the call from our manager, he said ‘Ok so I’ve got some bad news, they’re not going to go ahead with the third album,’ and I was like, ‘What do you mean not going to go ahead with it, what does that mean?’
Keavy continues, “It was like the rug being pulled from underneath your feet at 90 miles an hour.”
Sinead admits, “And for it to be so sudden, not even a maybe or we’re thinking about it. When it’s so sudden, it’s such a shock. It was complete and utter disbelief.”