Grazia was given exclusive access to the Spice Girls at the launch of Viva Forever yesterday, the musical using their songs as the soundtrack. In the grand Renaissance Hotel in London’s Kings Cross, a group of just seven journalists, including Grazia, sat around a table with Geri Halliwell, Victoria Beckham, Emma Bunton, Melanie ‘Mel B’ Brown and Melanie ‘Mel C’ Chisholm at the head.
We quizzed the girls about the upcoming musical which uses their music but – and we were told this repeatedly – is not about the girls themselves. It focuses on four (not five) girlfriends who dream of making it in showbiz but one, Viva, must decide whether to go solo or stick with her girls. ‘It has real emotion,’ Geri told us. ‘There are moments of crisis, but it’s uplifting too.’
Written by Absolutely Fabulous creator Jennifer Saunders and produced by Mamma Mia producer Judy Craymer, the girls stressed that they had the ‘dream team’ working with them. ‘We always said if we did this it had to be with the best people,’ Victoria said.
The girls were on brilliant form. Just like 16 years ago, Geri and Mel be largely dominated the round table Q&A format, talking loudly and jokingly mocking each other, whilst Mel C and Emma brought warmth to the group. When Mel C was describing the stage school they had attended Mel B interrupted, saying; ‘Where did Geri go then?’ There was a brief silence (it’s never quiet for long when the Spice Girls are around) before the gang burst out giggling and Mel C placed an affectionate arm around Geri. ‘She was taught in the school of life,’ she joked.
At one point during the interview, Mel B announced to the room of journalists; ‘Can I just say something? Not one of you have said how good we all look!’
Even Victoria was on form, though much quieter and more restrained than the rest of the group (just like the old days, eh?). When Grazia quizzed VB on her fashion credentials lending themselves to the costumes in Viva Forever, she was coy:
Grazia: Have you been asked to design them?
Grazia: But would you if you were asked?
VB: (Pause then a smile) We’ll see.
It’s not a ‘no’ people, it’s not a ‘no.’
For the full news report see next week's issue of Grazia! And for our favourite Spicey moments, click here.