Gareth Gates is ready for Footloose at Milton Keynes

Gareth Gates stars as Willard in the 2016 touring production of Footloose

Gareth Gates stars as Willard in the 2016 touring production of Footloose

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If you are a fan of Eighties music and love dancing, you are in for a treat as Footloose, the classic tale of teenage rebellion and repression takes to the stage for a major new UK tour.

Based on the 1984 screen sensation starring Kevin Bacon, Footloose: The Musical tells the story of city boy Ren who has to move to a rural backwater in America where he finds dancing is banned.

Pop Idol runner up Gareth Gates and singer Maureen Nolan of the Irish girl band The Nolans, star in the stage production as Ren’s friend Willard and preacher’s wife Vi Moore.

They perform alongside Luke Baker who plays Ren, the role immortalised by Bacon in the movie.

When Ren and his family move from Chicago to a small Midwestern town he faces a real culture shock. He tries hard to fit in, but street wise Ren can’t believe he has ended up in a place where dancing is banned.

One highlight in the town is beautiful blonde Ariel, but she already has a boyfriend, and her father is the minister who insists the town remains dance free.

With the school prom around the corner Ren decides he has to find a way to get everyone back on their feet and dancing.

Gates (pictured), who has sold millions of records worldwide and has appeared in many stage shows including Les Miserables, Legally Blonde and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, takes on the role of Ren’s best friend Willard, trying to help him settle in the new environment.

Nolan has been singing with her sisters since she was nine-years-old, enjoying phenomenal record sales worldwide.

She has also appeared in many stage shows including playing the leading role of Mrs Johnstone in Blood Brothers in the West End and on tour to great acclaim.

In her role as the preacher’s wife she is also mother to Ren’s love interest Ariel, played on stage by Hannah Price.

When the film was released in 1984 it became the highest grossing February release in US film history and the sound track album ended the year-long reign of Michael Jackson’s Thriller at number one.

The stage show is bursting with youthful spirit, dazzling dancing and electrifying music and will feature all the classic Eighties hits including Holding Out For A Hero, Almost Paradise, Let’s Hear it For The Boys and the unforgettable title track, Footloose.

The musical comes to Milton Keynes Theatre at 7.30pm from Monday (October 17) for a week through to Saturday 22, with additional 2.30pm matinees on Wednesday and Saturday.

Tickets cost from £17.50 and can be booked online at www.atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes or call the box office on 0844 871 7652.