Gareth Paul Gates was born on July 12, 1984 in Bradford, Yorkshire, to Wendy and Paul Gates. Gareth has three younger sisters, Nicola, Charlotte and Jessica. The Gates family also fostered several other children.
At the age of nine Gareth joined the choir of Bradford Cathedral and by eleven had risen to Head Chorister. In 1997 he sang a solo for the Queen at the Maundy ceremony.
Gareth is an accomplished classically trained musician, achieving grade eight in singing by the age of sixteen as well as playing the piano and classical guitar to grade eight standard. He also plays the drums and played electric guitar in his church based band, from the age of thirteen.
Gareth shot to fame in 2001 in the television talent show phenomenon – Pop Idol, hosted by Ant and Dec overseen by Simon Cowell, where he eventually came second to Will Young.
He was immediately signed to record label BMG and management company 19 Entertainment. This forced Gareth to abandon his A level studies (Music, English and Mathematics) and not take up the offer of a place at the Northern College of Music, where he was due to study Opera.
Gareth’s first single – a cover of Unchained Melody, entered the UK Top 40 at No.1. The single was voted 2002′s Record of the Year by ITV viewers and was the second biggest selling single of the year.Two more number 1’s, followed in quick succession – Anyone of us (Stupid Mistake), which was the sixth biggest selling single of 2002 and The Long and Winding Road (a duet with Will Young). The latter being a double A side with Suspicious Minds, was used in the soundtrack to Disney’s successful Lilo and Stitc,an animated film in which Gareth made a personal appearance too.
Gareth holds a number of records. He was the youngest male to enter at No.1. He was 17 years and 255 days old when he debuted at number 1 with Unchained Melody on 24th March 2002. As well as being the youngest solo male artist to have four No.1’s. Gareth was also the first male solo artist to have 4 No 1 singles in a 12 month period, since Frank Ifield in 1965.
In 2003 Gareth was chosen to sing the Comic Relief Charity Single ‘Spirit in the Sky’ with The Kumars. The single gave Gareth his fourth No.1 and turned out to be the second best selling single of 2003.
There followed three successful arena tours- the first with Pop Idol in 2002 – the second with Will Young and Zoe Birkett in 2003 and the third a solo tour in 2004 – which also continued into Asia.
Beyond the UK, Gareth has had considerable success in Europe and Asia, becoming the second best selling western album artist (after Beyoncé) in the MTV Asia area in 2003. By 2004 Gareth had become the best selling Western album artist in Taiwan. He has had successful single and album releases in Scandinavia, across Europe. India, Australia and South Africa.
He has won numerous awards abroad including Best International Male at MTV Asia in 2004 and the same accolade for MTV Taiwan and MTV China.
Back home in the UK, he scooped Record of the Year 2002 and various awards from Smash Hits, Disney and Capital FM as well as awards at the National Music Awards ceremony in 2002 and 2003. He also won the award for ‘Best International Pop Artist’ at the TMF Europe awards in Belgium in 2003.
Gareth works hard for several charities, using his profile to raise awareness of a number of causes important to him. He is patron of Body and Soul, a charity which helps young people, women and families affected by HIV and Aids and has worked to help fight HIV in Asia. Closer to home, he also worked with many Yorkshire based charities including the Chantelle Bleau Memorial Fund to bring to mind the dangers of solvent abuse and the special care baby unit at his local hospital. Gareth and his family belong to the Abundant Life Church in Bradford. He is an ambassador for the Restoration Trust, a church based charity and has campaigned on behalf of the homeless in Bradford. He has also very recently become a Patron for the charity Cash for Kids.
Gareth remains a patron of Bobby Moore Fund, which supports research into bowel cancer and took part in the 2009 Cosmo Everyman campaign, for prostate and testicular cancer.
In December 2009, Gareth took part in ITV’s All Star Family Fortunes, along with wife Suzanne, Mum Wendy, sister Nicola and friend Matt. They won £30,000 for the Bobby Moore Fund researching bowel cancer. Other TV and sporting activities for charity have included an appearance on Sky’s ‘Don’t forget the Lyrics’ and ITV’s ‘Mr and Mrs’ again for the Bobby Moore Fund. Gareth has attended and supported various golf events for the Rhys Daniels Trust too.
Gareth is known for having a stammer since a young child. He now campaigns for the McGuire programme and it’s methods, which have helped him control his stammer. He has become the youngest UK person to qualify as primary coach and course instructor intern for the McGuire programme and after running workshops at a number of courses Gareth co-led his first full course in February 2005. He still continues to instruct and lead courses, whenever his busy schedule allows. Around the time of the release of the film “The King’s Speech” he was often asked to speak about the film and discuss living with a stammer, which included writing an article for The Sun newspaper. Gareth does however still have to work very hard on his stammer which he still suffers from when he is very busy or tired. In 2010 Gareth’s improved speech enabled him to provide the voice-over for a CBBC documentary – Toy Soldiers. The programme highlighted the impact on young children having a parent away serving our country in the armed forces.
In 2006 ITV commissioned a television documentary titled Whatever Happened to Gareth Gates? The programmed showed an insight into the experience both in the music industry and life outside it for Gareth. The documentary, screened in December 2006, confirmed a new record deal and album as well as showcasing snippets of the new material. This marked the start of Gareth’s return to the music scene.
The first single from Gareth’s third album was “Changes”released on 9 April 2007. A second single, “Angel on My Shoulder”, was released on 18 June 2007 and the third album, Pictures of the Other Side, followed one week later on 25 June 2007.
Gareth worked with Judie Tzuke too. They co-wrote the song “Christmas and I’m Home”. It was first premiered live by Gareth in Bradford 2004. Tzuke recorded the song with pianist Haim Cotton and released it commercially as a charity single in 2009.
In March 2007, Gareth appeared on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross. This was the first time he had participated in an interview for a mainstream television chat-show since his speech improvement. It was a huge success and Gareth appeared very confident with his speech.
Gareth married his partner of some six years, Suzanne Mole, in July 2008 and they had a Daughter from the marriage who they named Missy.She was born in April 2009. Gareth and Suzanne announced their separation in October 2012. Missy continues to be the apple of her Daddy’s eye.
Gareth moved into musical theatre, initially playing the title role in the West End production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat at the Adelphi Theatre. He then went on to complete an eighteen month stint as Marius, in Les Miserables, firstly in the touring production followed by the show in the West End, where he won rave reviews. A live recording of the tour production featuring Gareth is available. He has also been involved in a number of musical theatre concerts including `A Spoonful and Stiles and Drew’ (2008) where he previewed the role of Robbie in their new musical `Soho Cinders’, appearing on the live CD of the same name. Other appearances include `Broadway to West End’ in October 2009, `A Grand Night Out’ in July 2010, `A Very Musical Evening’ for the Teenage Cancer Trust in September 2010 and two Valentine’s concerts, `Valentine’s At The Musicals’ in February 2011. In addition Gareth performed songs from Les Miserables and other musicals on Radio Two’s `Friday Night is Music Night’ in May 2010 and on BBC 1’s `Songs Of Praise, Big Sing’ in October 2010.
Further Musical Theatre roles followed, with Gareth taking on the part of Eddie in Loserville, a new Musical written by James Bourne, formerly of Busted, which opened in Leeds in June 2012. He then went on to play Dean in Legally Blonde for a UK tour later the same year.
Gareth is also a successful DJ – and regularly shows off his skills on the decks across the country.
In addition to his music, Gareth has been involved in a wide variety of other challenges. In 2008 he appeared on ITV′s Dancing on Ice with skating partner Maria Filippov, finishing fourth. September 2008 saw Gareth playing football for the England side, against The Rest of the World in Soccer Aid 2008 at Wembley, in aid of UNICEF. England won 4-3!!
Gareth played Prince Charming in the pantomime Cinderella at New Wimbledon Theatre, from December 2008 to January 2009. Further pantomimes followed – the Prince in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves at Woking in 2010-11. Aladdin in Milton Keynes in 2011-12, Sleeping Beauty at Canterbury in 2012-13 and Cinderella again at St Albans Arena in 2013-2014
Working with artist Jonathan Wilkes and his wife Nikki, Gareth and Suzanne set up Gates&Wilkes Academy of Performing Arts, for young people from ages five to eighteen, building on the successful academies in Stoke and Swindon already run by Jonathan and Nikki. The first intake was in September 2011. Following the break-up of his marriage, Gareth left the Gates/Wilkes Academies and set up his own Gates Academy.
Gareth is reported to be currently writing and recording a new album, with a band that he has put together. He has showcased several songs from his new material, which he co-wrote with his guitarist Pete Rinaldi. In the meantime he is gigging around the country, headlining charitable events and appearing at corporate events, both in the UK and abroad.
Gareth is returning to the ITV show Dancing on Ice for its final year. He will be taking to the ice with a new partner Brianne Delcourt. We will also be seeing more of him on ITV2 following the announcement that he will be taking part in the Big Reunion 2 as part of a new group 5th Story. The other members of the group will be Kenzie (ex Blazing Squad) Dane Bowers (ex Another Level) Adam Rickitt (ex Coronation Street) & Kavana (who was a contestant on The Voice last year).