Snowflakes kept falling on her head...
an American Dream
(Direct from Steve Abbott,
is very proud to be a Kiwi (aside from a beautiful
country, there is a great effort made to keep it unspoiled),
but the whole family like to make sure they are synonymous
with Christchurch. SO, rather than take the easy route and
recruit a band of musicians from Auckland, it was decided
(by Hayley) that it would be good to recruit local musicians.
final line up is string quartet, drums, bass, guitar, piano/keyboards
and special guests Brandon Poe (a Maori Tenor with a great
personality and voice) and Hinewehi Mohi (who has released
two albums as Oceania) as well as Sophie and Isaac!
hardest thing was telling the people that auditioned and
didn't get in the band.
as they were chosen, we were off to the States. First LA,
and Hayley did showcases singing in conference type rooms
with a ghetto blaster playing some backing track and the
wonderful Tom DeLuca (who we'd never met until we turned
up!) on acoustic guitar, an isolation ward in a hospital
would be less sterile!
just blew them away; the music directors (MD's) and Casting
Directors do this all the time in a disinterested kind of
way. After 4 days Hayley was offered 2 films and two TV
shows, acting and singing. The main problem is that she
can really act, hence when she auditioned for the casting
directors at Warners (who, among other things cast "Friends",
which was recording the last episode next door under heavy
security) they offered her a spot on OC, which is one of
the biggest TV shows in the States. One of the films is
shooting the week of the first dates in NZ, and they were
amazed, as were the record company, when Hayley wouldn't
consider rescheduling the dates, so we're not sure if the
film will happen (Princess Diaries 2). The showcase at Disney
was amazing, 30 people turned up, which is quite unusual.
Hayley appears in Mulan 2, singing the end titles.
exciting was the creator of American Dreams offering two
acting parts on the spot within minutes of hearing her sing.
Again, schedule-wise the first one may not be possible,
but the second one she just has to do, playing Joni Mitchell
acting and singing. It's a really good quality show.
New York, and a severe temperature change! On the day of
the showcase the change had got to all of us, Hayley's throat
was swollen on one side. I've seen her do this so many times,
where everybody is worried sick and somehow she just steps
up there and turns it on. The studio (used for Good Morning
America TV Show) looks out onto Times Square and just before
Hayley came on, the snowflakes started falling. It was simply
magical, Pokarekare Ana, Amazing Grace, Across The Universe
of Time, Who Painted The Moon Black, and a show-stopping
version of Mary Did You Know. Encore was Wuthering Heights,
which everybody keeps telling her not to sing, but she blows
all away when she does.
would have known that she was singing at less than capacity,
if only they had witnessed the Faenol Festival, or any of
the three Albert Hall performances before Christmas! I invited
a few real people, including Pauli and his Kiwi locals,
who had never seen Hayley sing live before, and it was good
to know that the real people were even more enthusiastic
than the media.
the album is out in North America on April 6th
and the David Letterman Show and Good
Morning America are confirmed first week. I just
hope after this gruelling tour (Hayley is the youngest
singer to ever embark on a full international tour)
Hayley still has the voice to do it all, although I have
no doubt that, as always, she will just make it happen.
point that Jill Westenra took the photo for the
cover of "Wuthering Heights", she did
a better job in capturing Hayley than the official photographers.
the 20th Feb Hayley is to be presented with a 10 x Platinum
Award by Helen Clark, the NZ Prime Minister, at
the Hilton Hotel, Auckland, the best selling artist in NZ
history. Also, Amazing Grace is number one in the Japanese
chart this week ........
Abbott (somewhere over the Pacific)
News Menu 2004/1