I’m a big fan of Gemma Collins but I’m still waiting for her to text, says The Masked Singer's Katherine Ryan | The Sun

THE MASKED Singer star Katherine Ryan revealed that her game plan was to impersonate Gemma Collins on the show – saying she's a big fan of the Essex reality star.

The comedian – who was hiding behind the mask of Pigeon – said she had to hide her Canadian accent, otherwise fans would have guessed her straight away.

Katherine, 39, admitted the obvious choice was to pick an accent and persona that she could pull off, and opted for none other than Essex star Gemma Collins, 41.

Speaking exclusively to The Sun, Katherine said: "I knew that I would have to change my accent because when I'm out in the world, like a pigeon living my life in London, I'm pretty anonymous until I speak and then people sometimes turn around and go are you Katherine Ryan, so I didn't want that.

"I knew I wasn't going to be the best singer so I had to lean into the guessing game.

"And the only accent that I can sort of do, and I'm not saying I nailed it, Gemma Collin and Essex.


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"Because I'm such a fan of her and I'm a natural mimic, I picked her.

"Purely because the Essex accent was the one I could do the most, I think I'm the strongest at.

"I learned it by watching ITV and being a fan of Gemma Collins and reality TV shows, so I thought it was only fitting that I'm invited on ITV to do this show that I love.

"So that was my plan – I thought Gemma's would be an old bird, an Essex pigeon, she'd be a bit sassy, she likes the type of music I like, she can sing."

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Katherine said she is still waiting for Gemma to reach out to her after her convincing impression of her.

"I'm friends with Gemma, I went to her one woman show, I worked with Gemma a few times but we don't really hang out outside of work," Katherine told us.

"She's not messaged me yet – she must know that people were guessing it was her, but she must be very busy."

Katherine said one of the hardest parts of the process was keeping it a secret from her daughter Violet, 12.

She continued: "I love telling everyone everything, I love when people tell me everything, so not telling my daughter was a real challenge as I'm honest with her almost to a fault.

But the actress admitted there was a part of her that enjoyed sneaking around and keeping a secret to herself.

"I had to keep reminding myself of the pay off because we watch The Masked Singer together, we always have and I just knew the reveal would be worth it," she went on.

"Violet wasn't excited at first, she was livid as she guessed me week one and I denied it. Not only did I have to keep a secret from her and deny and her early guess."

Katherine – who has since had adorable baby Fenna Grace – revealed she was eight months pregnant while filming the show.

The Duchess star said she was worried her huge baby bump would give it away.

"I think because I had a bump, I was worried that would give it away because there weren't too many people heavily pregnant that time and when you go to The Masked Singer you have to wear all of the balaclava and sneak down the driveway and jump in the car," she said.

"If any neighbours saw me that would have been very troubling.

"I think people assumed that because I was about to have a baby that it wasn't me, I've done that Essex accent before and I was surprised that my friends didn't guess me. I was surprised that I turned out to be a difficult guess.

"I was eight months and it was more difficult that I thought, I always think things are going to be easy. I think that's a real gift in my life and a hinderance.

"I was surprised how hot and out of breathe I got and that hindered my singing.

"But I wouldn't give up the choreography, my husband said just stand there and sing songs. I was like 'never', I have to learn Cheryl's Fight For This Love."

Although Katherine's time as cut short after she was booted out of the competition against Jacket Potato, the stand-up comedian said she has no plans to stop singing and dancing.

"I think that I'm competitive by nature, I knew I would never win, so I leaned into the guessing game," Katherine explained.

"So I just wanted to take every week as a real gift and an opportunity and interact with the panel and be funny, that's my job at the end of the day is to serve people, to make everyone laugh at a gig and equally on The Masked Singer.

"So I just tried as hard as I could in that massive pigeon costume to be a puppeteer and to be funny."

Katherine also admitted there is no hard feelings with the root vegetable.

She added: "I think Jacket Potato might be a superstar like a rock star – I am respectful of democracy and if the panel decided that Jacket Potato was better than me then Jacket Potato was better than me.

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"I would have loved to have brought more Pigeon to the table but I'm hoping I get another opportunity to sing. I will never stop singing and dancing."

The Masked Singer was the highest rated show on linear on Saturday night with a peak of over 5 million viewers and a share of 29.4 per cent.

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