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Last Updated: Monday, 18 February 2008, 16:58 GMT
Ball taking over Parky radio slot
Michael Ball
Michael Ball is currently playing Edna Turnblad in Hairspray
West End star Michael Ball is to take over Michael Parkinson's Sunday morning slot on BBC Radio Two.

The performer, currently starring in the award-winning production of Hairspray, said: "This is a wonderfully exciting new challenge in my career."

The 45-year-old's numerous Radio Two credits include his long-running series Ball Over Broadway as well as a number of one-off specials.

The first two-hour radio show will be broadcast on 6 April from 1100 GMT.

'Perfect company'

"I hope listeners will make a regular date to have lunch with me on Sundays," said Ball.

Ball has won critical acclaim for his roles in stage shows including Aspects of Love and Les Miserables.

BBC Radio Two controller Lesley Douglas said: "Michael has proved to be an accomplished presenter on Radio Two already.

"His warmth, obvious love of music and sense of humour make him perfect Sunday morning company."

Parkinson, 72, announced his intention to retire from his radio show in October after 11 years.

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