Sun 21 Sep 2003


5:19pm (UK)
Soprano Hayley, 16, Tops Chart with Debut Album

By Sherna Noah, PA News

A 16-year-old girl smashed records today with the fastest-selling debut album in the history of the UK classical charts.

The UK release by New Zealander Hayley Westenra has beaten previous first week sales from Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Charlotte Church and Russell Watson, her record company said.

Pure has shot straight to number eight in the UK pop chart and to the top spot in the UK classical charts.

The soprano has sold 19,068 albums this week, toppling the previous record of around 18,500 notched up by teen sensation Charlotte Church, Universal said.

Hayley was discovered busking in Christchurch, New Zealand, at the age of 11.

She was snapped up by Universal, home to acts such as Elton John, for a five-album £3 million deal.

She said: “This is amazing, unbelievable, made all the sweeter by the fact I’m living in London and loving every minute.”

Universal Classics and Jazz spokeswoman Linda Valentine said: “We are absolutely delighted that Hayley has broken this record, which we heard this afternoon, and achieved such phenomenal success, although we never doubted her.”


News item thanks to - Forwarded by Jon Milewalker


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