Michael Ball says his Sunday Love Songs show will ‘celebrate’ Steve Wright

Michael Ball has said his Sunday Love Songs programme on BBC Radio 2 will celebrate its former host, the late Steve Wright.

Wright, who died aged 69 in February, was the long-time presenter of the show and continued in the role even after he left his weekday afternoon slot on the station in September 2022.

West End star Ball, 61, will host his first Love Songs With Michael Ball from 9am on June 2.

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DJ Steve Wright died in February (Ian West/PA)

Speaking to BBC Breakfast about what listeners can expect from the two-hour programme, the singer said: “I’m going to end the show every week with a last dance.

“And this last dance that we have in our (first show) is going to celebrate Steve, I want to pay tribute to Steve for the legacy that he’s left me to carry on with.

“So one of his favourite songs, Wichita Lineman (by) Glen Campbell – he used the music as background for his show – and that’s how I’m going to celebrate Steve and say thank you for passing on this incredible show to me, under tricky circumstances, but I’m going to go for it.”

Ball called Wright the “master of broadcasting” and said he was “nervous” to take over.

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Michael Ball at the Olivier Awards at the Royal Albert Hall (Ian West/PA)

“You can imagine how nervous I am about it. I want it to be right. I want people to be happy and I’m really excited for the challenge”, he said.

Wright was a fixture on BBC Radio 1 before he moved to Radio 2, where he had also hosted Pick Of The Pops.

Ball’s previous 11am to 1pm Sunday slot will now be hosted by Top Gear presenter Paddy McGuinness.

Both shows will debut on Sunday June 2 on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds.