X Factor winner Alexandra Burke talks about The Bodyguard, new music and this weekend at Bluewater

News Shopper: X Factor winner Alexandra Burke talks about The Bodyguard, new music and this weekend at Bluewater X Factor winner Alexandra Burke talks about The Bodyguard, new music and this weekend at Bluewater

X Factor winner Alexandra Burke will be among the celebs at Bluewater this weekend as a giant sand sculpture is built in the centre.

England cricket legends Kevin Pietersen and Michael Vaughan are among the stars coming to Greenhithe to launch a competition where shoppers can win a luxury 5-star holiday for four.

World Champion sand sculpture artist Mark Anderson has built a six tonne replica of the Dubai hotel Atlantis, The Palm.

Shoppers can enter the contest by taking a selfie with the sculpture and posting it on social media with the hastag #AtlantisSelfie, with winners announced in June.

The 2008 X Factor winner Alexandra Burke, who has sold more than four million records, said: “It is going to be a lot of fun because people are going to be really shocked that there’s a massive sculpture of the hotel.

“Bluewater is such an awesome that people go to at the weekend so people will be in for a real surprise and a real treat. So many people love to take selfies.

“I’m quite a fan of selfies. I shall be starting and kicking it off with a selfie.”

The star will be taking a day off from rehearsals as she prepares to star in The Bodyguard in the West End from June 2 until the end of August.

She said: “The rehearsals are gruelling. I’m only in the second week now.

“I came off-script in seven days, walked into rehearsals and the associate director Frank gave me back the Saturday and cut some of my mornings because apparently I’m working very hard and am well ahead of where I should be, which is a very good sign.

“We’ll see how long that lasts.

“My life right now is literally, when I come home I listen to Whitney songs.

“When I was on holiday, all I did was read the scripts. My life has been literally, The Bodyguard.”

Alexandra will take on the role of Rachel Marron, currently played by soul queen Beverley Knight, and made famous by Whitney Houston in the film version.

She said: “It is such an honour to be able to play the part that Whitney made so famous. I’m a big fan of Whitney’s music, I always have been. She’s one of my idols. It is just a real honour and a privilege.”

Even though Alexandra is famed for having a huge voice, the songs – particularly I Will Always Love You – are undoubtedly tough to do justice.

Alexandra said: “Singing anything to do with Whitney, or other legends – Mariah, Gladys Knight, Aretha Franklin – will always be a challenge because they are big songs.

“Thank god, I’m up for the challenge and thank god for my mother, who is my vocal coach and helps me through everything. I’ve been singing these songs since I was a little girl.”

Her mum Melissa Bell, who was in Soul II Soul, has had an huge affect as Alexandra prepares for the role.

She said: “My mum is definitely my inspiration for the role.

“She’s a single mother, strong, sophisticated, always put food on the table and continued her career until she gave up singing for her kids. She was always a strong woman in my life and Rachel (the character) is that.”

If you’re a fan of Alexandra’s music, a treat is just around the corner. She’s finished recording a new album and is waiting for the right time to release it.

She said: “I really want to concentrate on The Bodyguard and not have anything else on my focus. “Once that’s done, we’ll have a release date put out.

“It is really different. It’s very voice driven.

“Elements of pop are in the album but it is a really great mix of soul, pop, R and B, and dance as well. It is all about the voice. When I was making the album, I kept saying to my managers I want an element of early Whitney meets Coldplay.”

Go to atlantisthepalm.com/selfie.

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