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Thursday August 12th, 2004

News Menu Button Hayley's dreaming of a bright Christmas

Hayley Westenra

Robbie Williams couldn't do it and it took the Rolling Stones years.

But breaking into the tough American market is something New Zealand singing sensation Hayley Westenra is taking in her stride.

Westenra, 17, is in Wellington this week to record two Great Performance shows for American public broadcaster 13Net.

The only other New Zealander to feature in the long-running series is Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.

The Three Tenors - Carreras, Pavarotti and Domingo - Italian opera star Andrea Bocelli, and young up-and-coming American singer Josh Groban, have all used the show as a springboard to further their careers.

"It's a huge deal really. It's something that can make or break you, so it's kind of nerve-wracking," the Christchurch teenager said before rehearsals at the Avalon television studios tonight.

New York producer John Horn, on hand to make it even more so with a guestimate of about four million United States viewers each time the show is aired, has brought a dozen crew to New Zealand to record the hour-long programme. It is due to be screened at Christmas.

As well as performance pieces - where Westenra will share the stage with young New Zealand tenor Teddy Tahu Rhodes, the NGC Wellington Sinfonia, two kapa haka groups, members of the Wellington Cathedral choir, and 12 hand-picked local musicians - the programme will include a profile of the singer "at home" and dozens of images of New Zealand.



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Article link thanks to Jon Voslo. Not for reproduction


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