Friday, May 15, 2009

Hayley at the Classical Brits!

Hayley's River of Dreams was nominated for Best Album of the year at this year's Classical Brit Awards. She appeared in a beautiful and elegant silver evening dress and wowed the crowd. Other guests included Britain's Got Talent contestant Faryl Smith, Katherine Jenkins, Jonathan Ansell and All Angels. 

Visit http://hwi.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=Media&action=display&thread=4624&page=15 for more photos and reports!  





 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hayley's New Zealand Tour - NOW POSTPONED

Hayley has initially been scheduled to tour New Zealand between May 1st - May 16th. Please note this has now been reschedules for August/September. These dates are yet to be confirmed, so please check www.hayleywestenra.com for more information on this tour.


Saturday, January 31, 2009

Hayley's Realm will Resume Soon

I have been away from NZ for quite some time, and was unable to work on HR. There have also been some administration problems which I, along with others, have been managing. The site will resume shortly. At the meantime, please visit the following sites for Hayley details:

www.hayleywestenra.com

www.hayley-westenra-international.com

http://hwi.proboards20.com/index.cgi (forum)

Thank you for your patience.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hayley Westenra on TV3: 'I refuse to dress like a tart'

Kiwi soprano Hayley Westenra has taken a stand against the music industry, saying she 'refuses to dress like a tart' to sell records.

The 21-year-old singer claims she has been in a battle with her record company over her wholesome image.

"Oh there's definitely the pressure," says Hayley's mother Jill. "You've only just got to see the artists that are in the media all the time and why they're in the media and you can see it works."

Unlike other young performers who have happily morphed from starlet to sexpot, Westenra has staunchly refused.

"Occasionally, I have had to stand my ground on image issues," she says. "I am not a tarty person and I don't wear those clothes when I am out, so I don't wear them to perform or for interviews either."

"Hayley's had that pressure since she was 18, and now that she's 21 they think well, surely now," says Jill. "But she's not prepared to compromise her standards."

Her record label Universal says talks about her image have always been age appropriate.

But the man who discovered the Christchurch-born star says an image revamp would do her career no favours.

"I think viva la difference," says Hayley's Former Agent Gray Bartlett. "Because in Hayley's case she is a certain type of personality. She's got a wonderful idea of her market and she's doing exactly the right thing."

And that proved true in her hometown today.

"I think she looks good, she's very clean, she's not too Americanised," says Lizzy Ryan. "I think it's a good picture for our country."

"It's good she's not conforming to other peoples ideals - you saw what happened to Britney," says Jon Skurr.

The starlet's stand already winning her new fans.

3 News

Don't miss the video which features Jill: http://www.3news.co.nz/Video/Entertainme....ault.aspx#video

Hayley Westenra fights attempts to turn her into a 'tart'

From The Telegraph

When Hayley Westenra sang in front of the Queen last night at the Festival of Remembrance, at the Royal Albert Hall, she looked characteristically demure.

The soprano tells Mandrake that she has, however, been involved in a battle with her record company after it allegedly tried to pressure her into dressing like a "tart".

She says: "Occasionally, I have had to stand my ground on image issues. I am not a tarty person and I don't wear those clothes when I am out, so I don't wear them to perform or for interview either. 

"It's funny because there are always people at record companies who push you to change yourself. They don't care about your longevity as an artist."

Hayley, who has just returned from Iraq, where she was singing for British Forces in Basra, signed with Universal when she was 15 and her album Pure sold more than two million copies. The company, whose artists include Kylie Minogue, says it's "not sure which people Hayley is referring to", but admits that it has discussed her appearance.

"We are very committed to her as an artist and her long-term career," says its spokesman. "Over the years there may have been discussions over her image, but we have always been open and honest about our views and never suggested anything inappropriate for her age."

Universal confirms that it wants to change her style. "Now she's turned 21 we have encouraged Hayley to think freely about how she presents herself and to be on-message with singers and artists of her own generation," says the spokesman.

Hayley adds: "When I was younger, I just wanted to fit in and I was so health conscious, and at one point a bit too skinny. In the last year I have realised that it's not the key to living and being happy."

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Singing poppy sellers: Hayley Westenra and Jonathan Ansell

Multi-million selling classical artists, Hayley Westenra and Jonathan Ansell, took to the streets to sell poppies at 1pm, Friday 31st October at Waterloo Station (opposite Platform 16) – singing as they sold.

On hearing reports of a lack of poppy sellers this year, singers Hayley Westenra and Jonathan Ansell volunteered to support The Royal British Legion by selling poppies themselves at Waterloo Station. Anyone lucky enough to buy a poppy from the stars was able to hear two of the most remarkable voices of our time. Alongside Hayley and Jonathan was Poppy Man – the symbolic representation of the help The Royal British Legion gives to serving and ex-Service people and their families. 

The Royal British Legion is looking to recruit a ‘new generation’ of 10,000 Poppy Appeal collectors between now and November 11th in a bid to meet an ambitious £32 million fundraising target.

Miss Westenra is fresh off the plane from Basra, where she launched the Legion’s 2008 Poppy Appeal, raising morale by singing to the troops. Having been deeply affected by her experience in Basra, Hayley feels strongly about continuing her work with the Legion back in London.

"When I was in Basra I spoke to a lad, just 19 years old, who had been driving a tank on the front line. When I look at photographs of soldiers marching home from war in 1918 and the faces of the men and women around me in Basra, what strikes me is how young they all are – and that the Legion has been there for all of them. Wars may change, but the need for a charity to deal with the human cost of conflict remains very much the same." 

Jonathan Ansell, who will be performing a duet with Hayley at the Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall on 8th November, wants to encourage the younger generation to get involved:
“People think of poppy selling as a job for the older generation, but there’s no reason why young people can’t be involved as well. The cause is as relevant to us today as it ever has been.”

Both Hayley and Jonathan feel that it is extremely important to remind people going about their everyday lives to think of the 4,500 British Armed Forces personnel in Iraq and nearly 8,000 others in Afghanistan - and are pleased to have the opportunity to do this through their gift of singing.

Between them, the tenor and soprano have sold over 10 million albums and sell out some of the world's biggest concert halls, so the commuters at Waterloo Station received an extraordinary treat.

The Poppy Appeal takes place in the two-week period running up to Remembrance Sunday on 9th November and Armistice Day on 11th November, when the nation pauses for a Two Minute Silence to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice during their service for their country.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Westenra gets bulletproof vest in Iraq

Kiwi songbird Hayley Westenra donned a bulletproof vest during a visit to Iraq to perform in a bid to help raise moral among British troops.

Westenra's father, Gerald, told The Press the young singer would arrive back in London this morning after a whirlwind trip to Basra, in southern Iraq.

Westenra was invited to perform for British troops by an army brigadier who heard her sing at a charity concert at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

"She had a gap of a few days between her tour shows so she decided to go for it."

Her father said the trip was a "big deal" for the Christchurch singer.

"I spoke to her the night before she left and she was excited but slightly nervous. As parents we were naturally a bit worried because she was flying into a war zone and there is always a risk."

Westenra was issued with a bullet-proof vest for the visit, he said.

Her recent album Pure went to No. 1 on the British charts.


Reference: http://www.stuff.co.nz/4738150a1860.html

River of Dreams - Out Now!

Hayley's Best Of album, River of Dreams is out now in the UK, which includes a collection of Hayley's best songs so far, and three new recordings. Click on the widget on the right to listen to the tracks!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Hayley Returns to Ghana

From hayleywestenra.com, as part of her ongoing support for UNICEF, Hayley is back in Ghana visiting child daycares, education systems and women who have benefited from her "Bikes for Ghana" campaign. She is also helping to raise awareness for a new campaign "Playpumps" which educates children in providing clean, safe drinking water. To find out more about Unicef and Hayley's role as ambassador visit http://www.youtube.com/user/UNICEFNZ.



Hayley with the children of Ghana


Hayley with reporter

Thanks to Roger from HWI for supplying the photos; from whom, with special 
thanks from Dave in Ghana, and Liz in New Zealand from UNICEF.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

"River of Dreams" Press Kit Released!

Hayley's new and upcoming album, River of Dreams is to be released on October 27th, and not November 3rd as previously advertised. At the meantime, hayleywestenra.com have released the press to River of Dreams. It includes promotional videos, clips, new photos and more! Here's a sneak peak:



Check it out: http://www.hayleywestenra.com/riverofdreams/

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Hayley selected as a NZ Air Force Patron!

Great news from hayleywestenra.com:

"Hayley is honoured to have been asked to act as patron for the Royal New Zealand Air Force. Hayley will join Diana Lady Issac and Air Marshal Sir Richard Bolt who have also pledged their ongoing support. To learn more about the airforce visit http://www.airforce.mil.nz/default.htm"

!!!CONGRATULATIONS HAYLEY!!!

This honorable role has certainly touched our hearts, so well done Hayley!

Hayley nominated for Best Classical Performer!

From hayleywestenra.com, we receive the fantastic news of Hayley being selected as best classical performer at the 2008 Variety Club Showbiz awards. The awards, to be held on 16th November, honour the best of UK talent.

!!!CONGRATULATIONS HAYLEY!!!

We wish Hayley the best of luck, and congratulate her on this honorable achievement. 

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Hayley's Realm will Resume Shortly

I would like to apologize to all of those who visit this site regularly, looking for updates on Hayley. I have been insanely busy this year with my art and university. I promise to bring you updates on Hayley (including all of the ones I've already missed) in the next few weeks. Thank you for your patience.
If you ever need any updated on Hayley, there is no better place to visit than www.hayley-westenra-international.com aka HWI. They are the best at updates on Hayley with the most reliable sources.
Hayley's Realm will resume soon!

Sukayna

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Hayley sings on July 4th!

Hayley had the privilege of singing on July 4th in Washington DC, for the biggest American celebration. She sang Shenandoah from her album Treasure at Capital Fourth. She wore her stunning red dress from the Classical Brits launch, and sang with a choir and full orchestra. You can view the video on YouTube by clicking the following link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gacsQJt8Au0





Hayley sings Shenandoah in front of thousands on July 4th in Washington DC

"Hayley's Pace" from Oxford Mail!

Hayley's pace
By Katherine MacAlister

Hayley Westenra is getting over her jetlag when we catch up, having just returned from an intensive month-long tour of Japan before jetting off to the States to sing to 300,000 people in Washington, and returning to Henley in time for her performance tomorrow.

"Is that how many people it is?" she asks completely unperturbed.

"I thrive on the crowds and the energy they give off. But then I've always been as comfortable as a performer and a singer, they go hand-in-hand to me. Maybe it's because I started performing at such a young age."

Having recorded her first album aged 12, Hayley has music in her blood, her grandmother also being a singer and her grandfather a pianist. But no one was prepared for Hayley's instant worldwide success once her album Pure hit the shops in 2003.

The soprano has now achieved sales of well over three million albums around the world, and sung with Jose Carreras, Bryn Terfel and Andrea Bocelli to guests including The Queen and President Bush at venues such as Wembley Arena and the Royal Albert Hall.

But right now all she wants to do is "chill out at home and eat Vegimite on toast on the sofa because I feel like a zombie.

"I haven't even got the energy to text my friends. But other times I'll get home and phone all my friends and go out."

Which takes us neatly on to shopping and all the frocks she needs to buy: "My favourite dress at the moment came from a shop in Houston, Texas, where Beyonce goes and it's just stunning.

"But the problem is that while you want to wear the same thing over and over again, you can't. So yes I do enjoy the dressing up as long as it reflects my personality."

So does she get time to shop? "Sometimes I have a stylist to go and choose me some things and hunt them down or otherwise I'll be in a random city and just come across a store that I love," she says.

And yet this world of red carpets, royalty and designer gear is a million miles away from her charity work in Africa.

As the youngest UNICEF Ambassador in the world, Hayley has worked in Ghana and is returning there in September to raise awareness for playpumps to bring clean water to villages.

And she finds moving between these two worlds "quite difficult, because one week you're staying in a posh hotel and the next you're in Ghana, walking around the slums, which is pretty traumatic and draining.

"Coming back afterwards is hard and also scarily easy because you want to tell everyone about the project but it's amazing how quickly you slip back into your old life," she explains.

"So you just have to do what you can and I'm not going to help much by giving up my singing career. Singing is how I can help and raise awareness."

In terms of maturity Hayley is 20 going on 60. But this New Zealand prodigy always had her head firmly screwed on.

"Sure I have had my moments of wanting to go out and forget my responsibilities. But aged 16 it was harder because I was much more keen to be social and not miss out on any parties.

"Now that I'm 20 I've realised I can have fun while I'm working. So I have a great time while I'm on tour and it doesn't really feel like work. I just have to mix the two.

"And while my parents used to accompany me everywhere, now they don't come to keep an eye on me, but to catch up. It was an easy transition because my parents just realised they weren't needed as much."

Hayley also puts much of her success down to her management team allowing her to "develop as a performer and be the creative driving force rather than clipping my wings. They believe in me and don't want to just replace me with a new voice."

Ask her legions of fans and they'd agree that replacing Hayley would be nigh on impossible. But before her star gets any brighter, you can spot her at the Henley Festival tomorrow night. "I'm really excited about that," Hayley adds. "Because I've never appeared there before so let's hope the sun is shining and everyone will be in good spirits." Box office 01491 843404 www.henley-festival.co.uk

9:52am Friday 4th July 2008

Friday, June 27, 2008

Hayley on Tour: UK Autumn Tour 2008

Following the release of River of Dreams, Hayley will begin a full tour in the UK. Don't miss this amazing chance of seeing Hayley in concert, and meeting her afterwards! Here is the full schedule:

Sun 19 Oct Aberdeen Music Hall

Mon 20 Oct Dunfermline Carnegie Hall

Wed 22 Oct Durham Gala Theatre

Wed 29 Oct Barrow Forum Theatre

Thurs 30 Oct Newcastle City Hall

Sun 2 Nov Lichfield Garrick Theatre

Mon 3 Nov Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

Wed 5 Nov Northampton Derngate

Wed 12 Nov Llandudno North Wales Theatre

Thurs 13 Nov Birmingham Town Hall

Mon 17 Nov Manchester Bridgewater Hall

Wed 19 Nov Cardiff St David's Hall

Thurs 20 Nov Bournemouth Hall

Tues 25 Nov Southend Cliffs Pavillion

Wed 26 Nov Cheltenham Town Hall

Fri 28 Nov Leamington Royal Spa Pavillion

Sun 30 Nov Swansea Grand Theatre

Please check your local theater of full information on tickets and bookings. You can also check www.hayleywestenra.com and click 'Events' for more information. 

Hayley voted number 3 in "Most Trusted New Zealander" chart!

Hayley has been voted number three in the annual New Zealand Readers Digest 'Most Trusted Entertainer' listings. She made it to number 22 in the listings for most trusted New Zealander.





OUR 10 MOST TRUSTED ENTERTAINERS
1. Peter Jackson (14)
2. Dame Malvina Major (19)
3. Hayley Westenra (23)
4. Neil Finn (25)
5. Tim Finn (27)
6. Dame Kate Harcourt (37)
7. Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (38)
8. Sir Howard Morrison (40)
9. Keisha Castle-Hughes (53)
10. Russell Crowe (63)



!!!CONGRATULATIONS, HAYLEY!!!

Hayley's new compilation album: "River of Dreams"

From hayleywestenra.com: 

Hayley is pleased to announce her Greatest Hits album, River Of Dreams, will be released on 3rd November. This will be accompanied by a full UK tour as well. Please see the events page for full tour listings.

It is available to pre-order on the following sites:

HMV.com - £8.99

Amazon.co.uk - £11.99

Play.com - £12.99

Make it a winner by pre-ordering now!

Updates will be back soon!

Hello eager Hayley fans,

I apologize for not keeping entirely up-to-date with this blog, but I have been very busy with exams, and will get to update all Hayley news very soon. At the meantime, please visit www.hayley-westenra-international for updates.

Thanks for your patience!

Sukayna

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

HAYLEY'S NEW JAPANESE ALBUM!

!!!BREAKING NEWS!!!

I have to apologize for being a little late on this news, but information Hayley's new album, special for a Japan release, has been released!

The title of this new album is:



Hayley sings Japanese Songs


As we are not yet sure of the new album's release, we still have the track listings, and the album cover. Check it out:

1 Amazing Grace Duet With Minako Honda. 
2 Hanamizuki 
3 Yuki No Hana 
4 Shiroi Irowa Koibitono Iro (English) 
5 I Am A Thousand Winds 
6 Blooming Flower 
7 Nada Sousou 
8 Tsubasa Wo Kudasai 
9 Sotsugyo Shasin 
10 Time Goes Around 
11 I Believe 
12 Shiroi Irowa Koibitono Iro (Japanese)


Release date: Out now!

Check back soon for details!

Hayley on "Ready Steady Cook"!

Hayley and Jonothan Ansell recently appeared on the British cooking show, Ready Steady Cook! They are promoting their new duet, from Romeo and Juliet, which they performed at the Classical Brit Awards. Thanks to Dave from HWI, here are the videos in three parts. I won't spoil it for you!

Ready Steady Cook - Part 1 of 3 (9 minutes+, 500 kbps, 34MB)
Ready Steady Cook - Part 2 of 3 (9 minutes+, 500 kbps, 32MB)
Ready Steady Cook - Part 3 of 3 (10 minutes, 500 kbps, 36MB)

Hayley sampling delicious and competitive dishes!

Hayley at the Classical Brits!

Hayley's album Treasure was nominated for Best Album of the year. Unfortunately, Hayley did not win the title, but a huge congratulations to Blake, who received this honorary award! Hayley attended this glamorous evening with fellow tenor, Jonathan Ansell, and they performed their duet Un Giorno per Noi together. Other stars who attended the Classical Brits included New Zealand's newest singing senstation, Will Martin, Sarah Brightman, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Andrea Bocelli, Nicola Benedetti, to name a few. Thanks to Dave from HWI, you can watch this magnificent performance by choosing from these three links:



Un Giorno Per Noi version 2 high quality (.wmv 82 MB) Some people may find this plays better than the XVID version below.

Un Giorno Per Noi version 2 high quality (.XVID 83 MB)


Thanks to everyone from HWI, who attended the Classical Brits and contributed these lovely photos and videos from this event!

   
Hayley and Jonothan perform, and Hayley arrives at the red carpet, meeting her fans.


Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hayley at the Classical Brit Awards Launch!

Hayley, along with New Zealand singing sensation Will Martin, attended the Classical Brit Awards Launch on April 8th. She was also surprised with a birthday cake for her 21st birthday, along with a performance by Blake.

Her newest album Treasure has been nominated under the catagory of Best Album of the Year. Voting has been available to international members of the public for the first time, and closed last night. The Classical Brit Awards will be on May 8th. Click below for the photos! And click on photos to enlarge.

Hayley grabs her nomination trophy. Hayley with Will Martin.

HAPPY 21ST BIRTHDAY, HAYLEY!

Hayley turned 21 on April 10. For the past two-and-a-year decade, she has become one of the most amazing artists of our time, and touched the lives of thousands through her music.

Hayley, I wish you all the success for the new and exciting year. I know you will produce more and more surprises as the years go on!


!Happy Birthday, Hayley!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Classiacal Brits Awards: Last Days for Voting!

This year, the voting for the annual Classical Brit Awards are now available to the international wide vote. This means you can help make Hayley a winner! Hayley current album Treasure has been nominated under the catagory of Best Album of the Year. Vote now to make it a winner!
Hayley's album Pure was also nominated for this catagory. However, that was when the votes were elligable to UK residents only.

There are only a few more days left to vote for Hayley to win Album Of The Year at this year's Classical Brit Awards. Please visit http://www.classicalbrits.co.uk/voting and cast your vote for Hayley's album Treasure! You can enter your vote as many times you like, so get your mouse clicking!
UPDATE: A message from Hayley:
" Hey everyone!!
There are only 4 more days left to vote for my album 'Treasure' to win 'Album Of The Year' at this year's Classical Brit Awards! Please could you visit and tell all your friends, relatives, colleagues, neighbours, pets (you get the idea!) to visit http://www.classicalbrits.co.uk/voting and vote for 'Hayley Westenra' -'Treasure' !! Your support would be very much appreciated!
Thanks so much!! Speak soon...
Hayleyxxx "

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Music of the Spheres: Mike Oldfield Features Hayley in New Album

Hayley sings a new song, On My Heart in Mike Oldfield's new album, Music of the Spheres. It is set to be released on March 17 and can also be bought from ITunes. Hayley also attended a special concert and performed this song live, which can be viewed here: Mike Oldfield - Music of the Spheres Guggenheim Bilbao

Promotional videos for the album are also available on YouTube, following the link below:


More information on the album can be read and dicussed on HWI's forum, here:

http://hwi.proboards20.com/index.cgi?action=display&board=Otheralbums&thread=1181206756&page=7

Friday, March 7, 2008

"Treasure" Nominated for Classical Brit Award!

Some great news from hayleywestenra.com gives us the nominations for the 2008 Classical Brit awards, and Hayley's latest album Treasure has been nominated as the album of the year!

"Hayley's album Treasure has been nominated for Best Album at this years Classical Brit awards to be held in May. This category is voted for by the public so please go to the web address below and follow the links to vote for Hayley: http://www.classicalbrits.co.uk/"

So vote for Hayley now, and make her a winner!



!!!GOOD LUCK HAYLEY!!!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Hayley in Concert: UK Appearances and Schedule

As Hayley has just ended her New Zealand tour, she flew back to the UK yesterday to attend these new events for the new year. Here are her concert schedule, as well as information on the venues and events from hayleywestenra.com:

March

Mar - 29: Croydon Fairfields Hall (Concert) Click Here

April

Apr - 05: Buxton Opera House (Concert) Click Here
Apr - 26: Millenium Forum, Derry (Concert)
Apr - 27: Belfast Waterfront Hall (Concert) Click Here

May

May - 02: Jersey Opera House, Charity concert (Concert) Click Here
May - 03: Jersey Opera House, charity concert (Concert) Click Here

June

June - 27: Abberglasney Gardens, Wales (Concert) Click Here

July

July - 12: Henley Festival (Concert) Click Here
July - 13: Orwell Park (Concert) Click Here
July - 26: Broadlands (Concert) Click Here

From hayleywestenra.com

Monday, February 25, 2008

In Tune with Nature: Aucland Report and Photos!

I had the absolute previlage of being able to attend the Villa Maria concert in Auckland as the last In Tune with Nature concert for the tour. I also had the honor of meeting Dave and Hayley (for the second time). Here is my report and photos:

"There were THOUSANDS!!! Probably five times more than the people who attended all the other concerts. Even Dave was surprised by the number who turned up. It was unbelievable. The whole time, I was thinking 'how on earth are they going to do signings with this many people??

We had a very distant view, and I can tell you now that despite the beautiful atmosphere, I really, really prefer indoor concerts. I think audiences have a fair distant between them and the performer, because a theater can only be so big. This place was massive, so I couldn't see Hayley's facial expressions or anything. Which was a real shame. But I look forward to more of her concerts later!

Then we had the interval, and then it was Fiona's turn. She was bear-foot! Boy is she FAN-TAS-TIC!!! Her pieces were beautiful, and she was so sweet as well. One of the most talented people I have seen on stage performing.

Then music (violin) started playing, and they announced to welcome Hayley. The music kept playing and Hayley walked onto stage not in her purple outfit, but the red dress she has worn to many events, including the NZ Music Awards. She sang Let Me Lie, which was one of my favorites for the eveing.

Then she sang Shanendoah, then Summerfly, which was fantastic. She had a great time perfoming that! Then May It Be which gave me goosebumps. I think she performed that so much nicer that the on on her album!! Then she sang Sonny on the keyboard (my mom's favorite song) and then she sang Who Painted the Moon Black, and thanked her NZ fans especially, saying she would not have gotten this far if it wasn't for us, which was followed by a huge applause. It got darker, and so did my photos, which was a shame. It was just too far away to get good shots, but I took them anyway. Then it was followed by Both Sides Now, and then Scarborough Fair, which she duetted with Dave. Then she did In Trutina, Sancta Lucia, Prayer, and then Hine e Hine with Dave. Then they sang Welcome Home, and she sang Down to the River to Pray as the encore songs.

By the thought, I had walked closer to the stage, and it was great to see her in a better view. But I kept listening to her, and walked over to the tent and was the first in line with my sister. HUNDREDS followed afterwards, and you wouldn't believe the long lone. She might still be there now!!

So, I waited in line, and then Fiona came along, so I had her sign Hayley's book, and I took a photo with her. Such a lovely woman, she was. And I adored her to bits. I can't wait to see more of here later, I really can't!

Hayley and Dave took very long to come, and we were getting a little impatient, because it had started to drizzle a little, but it was good timing. Hayley and Dave walked through, and Hayley looked over at me - and recognized me at once! Not that me and my headscarf are that hard to remember, mind you , but not only that, she knew my name, and thanked me for the bracelet, loved the gifts to bits.

That was by far the best part of the night. And then my sister got her autograph, and we got photos, and I also said hi to Dave and thanked him for a wonderful night."

Fiona Pears on violin

Hayley and Dave singing Hine e Hine

Hayley performs on stage

Hayley and Dave sing Welcome Home

Agent backs Hayley

By Carolyne Meng-Yee
24 February 2008 - New Zealand Herald

Hayley Westenra has been criticised by opera icon Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.

The man who discovered popera princess Hayley Westenra has hit back at Dame Kiri Te Kanawa's "holier than thou'' swipe at his star. The opera singer yesterday refused to share the stage with Westenra at last night's postponed Starlight Symphony concert in the Auckland Domain and then described her a "fake singer''.

But Gray Bartlett, who put Westenra on the musical map rubbished the criticism, pointing to the millions of CDs Westenra had sold.

"I can tell you now... Kiri and Pavarotti and those international singers, if it wasn't for their compilation CDs they'd be lucky to sell in the hundreds. Now that's the truth,'' he said.

Westenra's father didn't want to be drawn into the spat, but said the two singers' styles were "like apples and oranges'' and it was wrong to compare them.

Bartlett, however, was more to the point. Asked if Dame Kiri was suffering from "a bit of the old green-eyed monster'', he said: "I think it's a bit of that, plus I think it's this whole opera thing... and that holier than thou attitude. It [opera] still retains a snob factor.''

Bartlett believed Dame Kiri's comments were the result of professional jealousy and she felt threatened.

His advice to her was: "She looks great, she's done well, just get a life.''