The powerful harmonies of G4 will leave a big impression on a Weymouth Pavilion audience this weekend. The group's lead singer JONATHAN ANSELL tells JOANNA DAVIS about the rollercoaster ride he has been on since G4 shot to fame on the first series of the X Factor.

HE'S the cherubic-looking blond tenor who steered operatic pop group G4 to runners-up position on the first series of the X Factor.

Jonathan Ansell was catapulted to instant stardom singing with G4 on the TV talent show and brought classical music to British reality TV screens for the first time.

The former buskers, mentored by Louis Walsh, became known for their take on Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody and went on to have two platinum selling albums.

Thirteen years later Jonathan Ansell and his group G4 are still touring and are bringing their suave operatic sound to Weymouth Pavilion this weekend.

And it's the ultimate pub quiz question - who did pip G4 to the post in the inaugural series of the X Factor? Well, the answer is one Steve Brookstein, who was last heard of releasing an album in 2014.

Jonathan tells me it's hard to believe 13 years have passed since G4 wowed the public on the TV talent show in 2004.

"We do have to spend a lot more on make-up now," he jokes.

"But when I look back on it I think of it as the most beautiful, exciting time. X Factor was the means of taking us on to the next platform, it was unbelievable television and the chance to showcase what we do."

X Factor replaced Pop Idol as ITV's flagship music talent show and this was the first time groups were able to enter this kind of competition.

Jonathan recalls: "What we were doing was a new sound and I think we opened the door for other artists to perform pop opera. I think we were pioneers of the genre."

In 2007, after three albums, more than two million album sales and five sell-out tours with performances in many of the UK's iconic venues, the band decided to disband to follow individual interests.

On November 17 2014 the group reunited at London's Barbican Centre to celebrate their 10th anniversary since performing on the X Factor.

"We were really nervous," Jonathan said.

"It was one of the band members, Mike, who got in touch about doing a one night show at the Barbican and it blew us away. People were buying tickets and getting excited. We had a choir on stage and there was a lot of screaming that night. We realised there was still the appetite for us coming back."

The group currently consists of Jonathan and fellow tenor Ben Thapa, baritone Mike Christie and bass singer Nick Ashby.

For this show, G4 Live, the audience will be able to enjoy their classic renditions of Bohemian Rhapsody, My Way, Nessun Dorma and Creep plus recent heart-stopping tracks from their latest album G4 Love Songs.

"I would really describe this show as the coming of age of G4," Jonathan said.

"We've had a reform and we've replaced Matt. We'll be singing a lot of the songs that made us popular in the first place. And we'll also be performing original material - someone wrote us a song called Another Day which has been played on Radio 2."

There have been many highlights over the years Jonathan says, but one in particular was performing at Andrew Lloyd Webber's 60th birthday concert in Hyde Park.

"Another big one for me was walking on to the stage and being introduced by the late Terry Wogan at Proms in the Park in front of 45,000 people. We were just blown away by that experience."

And there's still plenty on the list Jonathan wants to achieve with the band, he says.

"There's so much on the bucket list!" he says.

"The big one for me would be to perform at Sydney Opera House, we have never performed there and I would very much love to. I think the acoustics would be amazing."

Jonathan has a special affection for Dorset having grown up by the coast.

He tells me: "I love that corner of the world. I grew up in Bognor Regis near the sea and I just love being by the sea. I think Weymouth is beautiful and Chesil Beach is just around the corner. We've holidayed as a family around Dorset and I'm looking forward to coming back and going for a walk by the sea before the show."

It's a good thing that Jonathan is such a fan of Weymouth - he'll be back on June 11 performing a Les Musicals show with fellow X Factor alumni Rhydian Roberts.

Jonathan now calls Leeds home, where he lives with his wife Debbie and their two children.

Now in the midst of a busy tour which will continue until March 23 and then resume on April 9 for an Irish leg, Jonathan says he unwinds while on the road with a relaxing pastime.

"I love fishing," he tells me.

"The guys all take the mick out of me for it! I travel with a little fishing rod. Two of us set off and find a peaceful spot for fishing. It's not about catching the fish, it allows you to go out and see a little bit if the world we live in and it's even better if we catch something. Failing that you can always pop by the fishmonger and pretend you did!"

*G4 Live, Weymouth Pavilion, Sunday, March 4, 7.30pm. Call the box office for tickets and more information.