Jane McDonald: 7 facts about the cruise singer and TV presenter

29 March 2019, 15:55

Jane McDonald
Picture: Getty

By Tom Eames

Jane McDonald is back with a brand new TV series on Channel 5.

Here are all the big facts about the former cruise ship singer turned TV star...

1. How did Jane McDonald get discovered?

Jane toured many clubs in northern England, with her father helping out as her roadie. She provided all of her own equipment, which she once had to replace after it was destroyed in a bar room brawl.

Her first position on a cruise ship was on the Black Prince, and later the Horizon. Following her father's death, she began working on the Zenith, and later the Century. Eventually, she began working as a headliner on the Century's sister-ship, the Galaxy.

Soon after, aged 35, she was contacted by producer Chris Terrill, who asked her to lead his new docusoap The Cruise. Seen by an average of 14 million viewers per episode, she became an overnight celebrity.

2. How many albums has Jane McDonald released?

Jane McDonald has recorded eight studio albums, as well as releasing several compilations.

Her debut self-titled album was a UK number one in 1998.

Her most recent was Cruising with Jane McDonald, which was released in 2018.

3. What is her new TV series Jane McDonald & Friends?

Jane McDonald's new show will launch on Channel 5 on Friday, July 6 at 9pm.

The series will see Jane sing some of her favourite songs with a live band, and will invite stars of the stage and screen for the ride.

The first episode features actor John Partridge, Rose Royce frontwoman Gwen Dickey, and the cast of the West End musical Chicago.

4. How old is Jane McDonald?

Jane McDonald was born on April 4, 1963.

She celebrated her 55th birthday in 2018.

5. Who is Jane McDonald's husband?

Jane McDonald and partner Eddie Rothe
Jane McDonald and partner Eddie Rothe. Picture: PA

While working on the Century cruise ship, she met Henrik Brixen, who was the ship's plumber.

Their wedding in 1998 was televised by the BBC and watched by a large audience. However, the couple have since divorced.

She was previously married to a man named Paul from 1987 to 1988. She later said: “My first husband was a lovely man. It was all my fault. I made a mistake and he deserved better. I got out as quickly as I could. I didn’t want to put us both through prolonged agony."

Since 2008, she has been in a relationship with her old teenage sweetheart, musician Eddie Rothe, who was previously the drummer for The Searchers.

She said in 2011: “I was bereft after my second marriage broke up. I didn’t date anyone seriously for seven years and could hardly expect anything with my track record. But this guy takes my breath away."

6. What is Jane McDonald's net worth?

Jane McDonald has an estimated net worth of around $6 million (£4.5m).

7. She was in a classic music video

Well, if you count 'Superman' by Black Lace as classic.

McDonald’s first TV performance was as a guest dancer on the 1983 novelty song, which was shot at the Casanova's night club in Wakefield, where she worked as VIP lounge manager.