Westenra proves Pure gold

08 January 2004 (NZ Time)
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ON HOLIDAY: Singer Hayley Westenra relaxes by reading a magazine at home in Christchurch.



The fairytale just keeps getting better for Hayley Westenra.

Worldwide sales of the songbird's debut album, Pure, broke the one million mark yesterday.

The Christchurch singer admitted last night the news had yet to sink in: "It's like, wow. Overwhelming.

"Thinking over one million people have bought my album is just amazing," she said.

"A little girl from Christchurch, and look what has happened.

"It's a massive compliment."

Westenra has been back in New Zealand for three weeks following a five-month stint in Britain promoting Pure.

While in Britain, she sang for the Queen three times and also performed in front of United States President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

"Thinking back on what happened last year, it's just incredible," the 16-year-old singer said.

"I had a really big year.

"I didn't really realise what it would feel like. In some ways, when I was working making the album, I thought, `wouldn't it be cool if this did really well'. But now that it has, it's just incredible."

Westenra's record company Universal said yesterday Pure had been a "tremendous success", and the Christchurch teenager had "climbed the ladder quickly".

Westenra kicks off a nationwide tour in Dunedin on February 16, before heading to North America.


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