Steps won’t rule out ABBA-style avatars when they are 70 and would love to form super-group

STEPS won’t rule out ABBA-style avatars when they are 70 – and reckon the technology will be even better by then.

And the group — who featured on the 1999 AbbaMania tribute album and covered Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus’s song Story Of A Heart in 2017 — would love to team up with the iconic Swedish band.

Ian ‘H’ Watkins said: “I want a project where Steps join forces with ABBA.” Jokingly, he added: “We could be a super-group called STABBA”.

Fellow band member Claire Richards was impressed by the Swedish legends’ revolutionary hi-tech tour, which features youthful avatars of the foursome.

She said: “For ABBA, the avatars are amazing because they haven’t performed together for 40 years, but they are bringing the experience to new fans. Maybe we’ll get the holograms out when we’re 70, though there will be new technology by then.” And Claire joked: “We’ll probably be cryogenically frozen or something.”

The British five-piece — which also features Faye Tozer, Lisa Scott-Lee and Lee Latchford-Evans — might be fans, but they will not be following ABBA by competing in the Eurovision Song Contest.

Faye said: “When we have worked so hard to have people take us seriously, and not laugh, to be told: ‘Nil point’ would be such a shame. H loves Eurovision and is keen, but I don’t want us to do it.” Claire added: “It would be an incredible experience. But there are a lot of reasons not to.”

The chart-toppers — who celebrate their 25th anniversary next year — are proud to have outlasted all their former rivals as the “last band standing” in pop. Steps exploded on to the pop scene in 1997 with debut 5,6,7,8 going on to sell 15million albums.

'We feel very blessed'

Lisa said: “We never thought we’d be here 24 years on, talking about a new album and a new tour. It’s incredible so much has come from one single deal all those years ago. We feel very blessed to have had the support we’ve had.

“But we have also worked very hard. The first time around, we were often so busy we didn’t know what country we were in.” Lee said: “Back then, the joy was taken out of it because it was a machine. We were going everywhere, we didn’t have a lot of breathing space.”

Claire added: “Looking back, we weren’t really seen as human beings by the people around us. On one occasion I found a lump, and I booked a doctor’s appointment to get it checked. When I told them, they asked me to re­arrange it.

“We had radio interviews to do that day. That was one of the few times I stood up for myself and said, ‘No, this is more important’. But I felt so guilty. Things like that were the darker side of the industry for us.”


STEPS know it’s been a tough time for everyone these past 18 months and they would love to give a lucky Biz on Sunday reader and their family, friends or colleagues the ultimate pop night to remember.

The winner will win 30 tickets to one of the forthcoming Steps concerts on their What The Future Holds UK tour this November and December, including a champagne reception on arrival.

Tickets will be for a venue of your choice, excluding sold-out shows in Glasgow on 22nd November and Brighton on 25th November.

To enter the competition, readers should comment on the Steps competition Instagram at @bizonsunspotlight and tell us why they and their friends, family or colleagues deserve a night out. Perhaps you want to nominate someone who has gone above and beyond for the NHS or a family member who has lost a loved one. Or maybe you’d just like to treat your friends to a night out.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS: Promotion closes at 26/09/21. Open to Sun on Sunday readers who are residents of the United Kingdom (excluding Scotland/Northern Ireland) only, except for anyone under 18 years of age, employees and agents of the Promoter and its group companies, or third parties directly connected with the operation or fulfilment of the Promotion and their affiliates, and their immediate families and household members. One entry per person. Winners will be selected based on who deserves to win the prize and notified by 10/10/21. No cash alternative and prize is non-transferable. Your information will only be used to administer this Promotion in accordance with our privacy policy. Promoter is News Group Newspapers Ltd.

  • Full T&Cs apply – see

H said: “Before, we were a part of the machine, now we drive the machine. And now we’re preparing to celebrate our 25th anniversary next year. We’re the only ones still doing it from back in the day.”

Claire went on: “We were from the era of manufactured pop. And I think expecting a group of strangers to audition together and then be friends and colleagues forever is a big ask. We are an exception to that.”

The group split in 2001, briefly reuniting in 2011. Since reforming in 2017 they have been stunned by their second wave of success. They have released new album What The Future Holds Part 2 and embark on an 18-date arena tour, supported by Sophie Ellis-Bextor, in November.

Lisa said: “It’s wonderful getting back to live music. The atmosphere in the arenas is going to be electric.” Consider our tickets bought.

We’ve taken a shine to Gigi

GIGI HADID looks slick in silver as she struts down the runway at New York Fashion Week.

The stunning US model appeared in the Brandon Maxwell show just hours after showcasing a collection for Michael Kors.

Gigi still looks stunning even though her outfit could have been made out of tinfoil.


LAILA ROUASS is on a mission to make the internet less toxic.

Actress Laila, who is hosting a workshop via blog wholeandthensome on Sept 19, said: “You can spend hours on Instagram looking at women like Jennifer Lopez, who are like 50 plus, and think ‘I don’t look like that!’

“Most people don’t have £300million in the bank.

"We have to make it realistic.”

Marred at first sight for Alexis

MARRIED at First Sight star Alexis Economou has slammed ex Jordon Mundell after he confessed to cheating on her.

Jordon revealed that just days after his honeymoon with Alexis he had shared a kiss with Megan Wolfe.

And Alexis, who was left devastated by the bombshell on the explosive E4 show, laid into him, saying: “It was a d*** move.” She told us last week: “I had already decided to leave the show, but for me, finding out that Jordon and Megan had shared a kiss just proved my point.

“He had been flirting at the dinner party so part of me knew he would stray. But it was hurtful and I felt deflated. I felt like s**t. I tried to hide that insecurity and vulnerability from Jordon at the time, but watching it last week there were a lot of emotions and I did cry.

"Now I don’t feel anything towards him. It was a d*** move. He did apologise to me off camera. I would like to think it was genuine, but you never know.”

Despite her heartache, Alexis insists she has no regrets. She says: “I did go on the show to find love. It’s ironic that I chose it above other dating shows because I wanted someone who was going to make a commitment to me.”

  • Married at First Sight continues tomorrow night on E4 at 9pm.

Olly good fun, Emma

JOKER Emma Willis pretended to be Voice judge Olly Murs during a charity day out for kids.

TV star Emma joined Stephen Mulhern for a special event created by Disney for Make A Wish families – after the two organisations teamed up with the Kentown Wizard Foundation. In an impromptu skit based on The Voice Kids, Emma imitated Olly, while Stephen did his best Tom Jones impersonation.

  • To find out more about the special charity events visit

JLS 60s comeback

COMEBACK kings JLS don 60s outfits in the video for new single Eternal Love, which sees them embrace the disco era.

The lads, Aston Merrygold, Marvin Humes, Oritse Williams and JB Gill, said: “We have always loved pushing the boundaries when it comes to fashion.”

Liv Tyler vs Posh's cosmetic battle

LIV TYLER has applied for a trademark to use her name to sell cosmetics, sparking speculation she may be launching her own beauty range.

The new venture could see her go up against BFF Victoria Beckham in the mascara wars after Posh launched Victoria Beckham Beauty in 2019.

The Hollywood actress’s wide-ranging application also secures her the rights for brand Liv to sell candles, jewellery, clothing and even wine.

This week, we’d…

  • SNOG: BRITNEY SPEARS: To celebrate her new-found freedom.
  • MARRY: DANIEL CRAIG: We couldn’t be more excited for his Bond return.
  • AVOID: TOM CRUISE: If his drones can wipe out a field of cows, we’d have no chance.

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