Take That’s reunion more than 10 years ago nearly did not happen because the band members were almost too scared to attend the event that caused their comeback, Gary Barlow has said.
The popular boyband, who split in 1996, opted to get back together for a reunion tour in 2006 following the premiere of a Take That documentary in late 2005.
The film coincided with the release of a greatest hits album, and the positive response encouraged Gary and bandmates Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Howard Donald to hit the road on their Ultimate Tour.
But things might have turned out differently had they not arrived at the screening event, which Gary said they almost missed over fears of looking “desperate”.
Gary told The Sun’s TV Magazine: “Oh my God, we weren’t going to turn up at that.
“We turned our car back six times. The driver must have thought: ‘What are they doing?’ We were like: ‘We can’t do this. We’re going to look desperate. Turn the car round!’
“Then we went and there was this unbelievable reaction from the audience.”
He said: “Two days later, after we’d come back down from this feeling that we hadn’t felt in years, we were like: ‘What do we do now?’ We didn’t have anyone advising us at that point, just the four of us sat in a bar.
“That’s what was so beautiful about it. The flower grew again from that, just like when we started.”
Days later, Gary, Mark, Jason and Howard held a press conference to say they were inspired to stage a comeback due to the positive reaction.
A year later, in November 2006, Take That released their first post-split album Beautiful World – their first in 11 years – and it topped the charts, cementing their place once again in the music industry.
Fifth member Robbie Williams, whose departure from the band in 1995 led to their initial separation, did not rejoin Take That at the time, but did later in 2010 for a couple of years.
Since Take That’s return to the spotlight, they have scored four number one albums and four number one singles.
Jason left the band in 2013 and Gary, Mark and Howard have continued releasing music and touring as a three-piece.
Gary is fronting a new BBC talent show called Let It Shine, which looks to cast a group of male singers to star in a musical production inspired by Take That’s greatest hits – although details of the stage show’s plot are still being kept under wraps.