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Melanie C chats exclusively to HELLO! Online about playdates with the Spice mums and being back on stage

8 March 2013
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Hot on the heels of being crowned Celebrity Mum of the Year on Sunday, Spice Girl Melanie C gave an exclusive interview to HELLO! Online.Between rehearsals for Jesus Christ Superstar, the 39-year-old singer spoke about why she thinks Emma Bunton is more deserving of the mum of the year title, birthday parties with the Spice children and being back on stage. The mum-of-one stars as Mary Magdalene in the all-star Andrew Lloyd Webber musical alongside Chris Moyles and Tim Minchin. They are heading to Australia in May for a month-long tour before returning to the UK for an arena tour in October.

Do you see much of the other Spice mums these days? "We try to get time together, it depends what's going on really. It was my daughter Scarlett's fourth birthday a couple of weeks ago and Geri Haliwell's daughter Bluebell and Emma Bunton's sons Beau and Tate were all there. They get on very well. Bluebell's very sweet and she's older so she really looks after Scarlett which is very cute. Beau and Scarlett get on well because they're quite similar in age." How does it feel to win the same title as Emma Bunton who also won a Celebrity Mum of the Year title? "We're very proud of ourselves! But I have to say I think Emma was a much more deserving mum of the year because she's got two boys. My little girl is a handful but two boys is quite something. But it was an absolute honour. There are so many great women that were honoured that day so I just feel lucky to be one of them." How different are your approaches to bringing up your children? "I think we're pretty similar. I have looked to the girls to see how they are as mothers. My mum is brilliant and has always been there for me and supported me. Being a celebrity mum is a complete unknown in our family and that brings some new concerns and questions and decisions that you have to make so it's been wonderful having all the other girls' input to help with those things." What are your plans for Mother's Day? "Oh my goodness I'm very excited about mother's day because it's my first day off in about two weeks! My mum, Scarlett and I have started a little tradition. We go to the park in the morning, have a nice bit of lunch then some girly shopping in the afternoon."

 So what are you doing for Red Nose Day? "Well I was part of the Red Nose Day challenge this year which is going to be aired on 14 March. We basically had to kayak and white-water raft down the Zambezi for five days. It was petrifying and exhilarating and so many things! We had to camp and we were living in the bush for five days which is something I've never done and it was all pretty daunting." Was it all plain sailing? "We had some dramas along the way but we met some incredible people as well as the children that the money will be helping. It's really about raising money for education and vaccinations this year so that inspired us and drove us on when we got really exhausted. "I'm not afraid of water but there were a lot of dangers out here. A lot of it was the wildlife — crocodiles and hippos — and we were warned about the elephants that might roam into the camp, luckily they didn't! There were some things that went wrong along the way and there were some moments when we were concerned for people's safety. People should watch that and see the dramas unfold." What were the team like to work with? "Brilliant. All of us, Dara O'Briain, Chelsee Healey, Greg James, Phillips Idowu, Jack Dee and I, are all going to be there on the night to talk about our adventure. Everyone was great. We were such an odd bunch, all so incredibly different but we got on really well." Will you see them again? "I hope to. I saw Chelsee on Sunday. She presented my award with Rylan which was really lovely. I really hit it off with Greg James. He's such a lovely guy and we've got lots of friends in common so we're planning a karaoke night out. We all want to go and support Phillips this year at the athletics championships so we've got plans to hang out. "

Were you physically prepared for the trip? "Yeah, it was a difficult one to train for really because I'd never kayaked or done white water rafting before so I just had to go out there and get on with it. It was difficult because it was just after Christmas and New Year so I wasn't at my fittest but I do tend to keep a general level of fitness and my stamina's pretty good." What do you do workout wise? "I like yoga, I do Vinyasa flow and a bit of Bikram. I love running outside, I'm doing the London triathlon this year for the second time so I'm doing a bit of cycling, a bit of swimming and a bit of running and strength work in the gym and circuits, whatever I can fit in. But nothing at the moment though because I'm rehearsing every hour god sends." You're looking great. Do you follow a strict diet? "No, I just really believe in food being as natural and as fresh as possible, especially in a year like this year where I'm very busy with work and I'm doing the triathlon. It's just about getting plenty of fruit and veg and good protein, lots of complex carbohydrates and plenty of water. "I love to have a drink and I love cake but it's just about everything being in moderation, isn't it. I try to follow an 80:20 rule where I'm good 80 per cent of the time but once I get to the weekend, bring it on I say. I think denial is a dangerous game to play because you end up wanting what you shouldn't be having so it's all about balance like everything in life." What's it like being back on stage performing? "It's great. It's something that if I don't do it for a space of time I miss it incredibly so it was really lovely to know that this year would be filled WITH either performing as Mary Magdalene or touring with Jools Holland at the end of the year. This show is just such an exciting thing to be a part of and to take it over to Australia is just brilliant." How does it compare to performing as part of the Spice Girls? "It's really different. When I was up on stage I suppose Sporty Spice was a bit of a character but she was very much a part of who I am but Mary Magdalene is somebody incredibly different. Acting is still a challenge for me and it's I'm still relatively inexperienced in so it's fun learning." Are you looking forward to touring? "I'm very excited. I've never toured Australia so it's a first for me. We're away for about a month but I'm going to take my little girl because it's too long to be away from her so that's exciting to have her on the road with us." Do you enjoy travelling? "I've done so much travelling in my career that I think I'm a little bit jaded. I mean I love being in different countries, it's the actual travelling that becomes a bit tedious. But getting to see other countries and meeting fans all over the world never gets old."

Tickets for the UK tour priced £30-65 are available from 

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