On 30 June, City Connect celebrates the birthday of Cheryl Cole (née Tweedy) who was born on this day in 1983. Having divorced from her husband Ashley Cole, the singer has decided to be professionally known as Cheryl. She’s had a rough ride in the last couple of years so we wish Cheryl all the best at 29 and hope she finds commercial and critical success with her new solo album A Million Lights which was released earlier this month.
Cheryl rose to fame in late 2002 when she auditioned for the reality television show Popstars: The Rivals on ITV. The programme announced that Cole had won a place as a member of the girl group, Girls Aloud. The group’s debut single “Sound of the Underground” peaked at number one on the UK Singles Chart, becoming the 2002 Christmas number one. Girls Aloud hold the record for the shortest time between formation and reaching number one.
Since 2003, Cheryl Cole has been part of Girls Aloud twenty consecutive top-ten singles, with all but one charting within the top ten, and 15 reaching top five positions in the UK. Their singles “I’ll Stand by You”, “Walk This Way”, and “The Promise” have charted at number one. All five of their studio albums have been certified platinum with their greatest hits album The Sound of Girls Aloud and 2008’s Out of Control, both of entering the UK Albums Chart at number one. Girls Aloud have earned five BRIT Award nominations from 2005 to 2010. In 2009, Girls Aloud won “Best British Single” at that year’s Brit Awards for “The Promise”.
Girls Aloud have become one of the few UK reality television acts to achieve continued success, and had amassed a fortune of £25 million by May 2009. The 2007 edition of Guinness World Records listed them as “Most Successful Reality TV Group”.
Cheryl began dating England and Chelsea footballer Ashley Cole in September 2004, announcing their engagement after he proposed in Dubai in June 2005 and the couple were married on 15 July 2006. The couple were hit with Kiss and Tell stories about Ashley’s infidelities but they reconciled and stayed together.
In June 2008, it was announced Cole would replace Sharon Osbourne as a judge for the fifth series of The X Factor alongside Dannii Minogue, Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh. Cole was given the girls category (made up of female contestants between 16 and 25) and subsequently ended up as the victorious judge when Alexandra Burke was crowned the fifth winner of The X Factor on 13 December 2008.
Cole returned for the sixth series of The X Factor in 2009 and was given the boys category (made up of male contestants aged 16 to 25). Cole emerged as the winning judge for a second consecutive year after Joe McElderry was crowned the sixth winner of The X Factor. Simon Cowell, the show’s creator, said, “I knew she was going to be good because she speaks like normal people speak. People can relate to that. And I think that is the best sign of a judge.” Cowell has referred to Cole as “one of the best I’ve ever worked with.”
In 2009, Girls Aloud announced their musical hiatus and Cheryl Cole went on to release two solo albums, which both went to number one in the UK: 3 Words (2009) and Messy Little Raindrops (2010). She achieved a number of hits, including two number one singles: “Fight for This Love” and “Promise This”.
In early February 2010, news broke that Cole’s husband had cheated on her with five more women. On 23 February, Cole announced she was separating from her husband and subsequently filed for divorce at London’s High Court citing “unreasonable behaviour” of estranged husband Ashley as the reason for their break-up. She was granted a decree nisi on 3 September 2010.
On 3 July 2010, Cole was admitted to hospital with suspected acute malaria after a visit to Tanzania.
Cole returned for the seventh series of The X Factor in 2010 to mentor the girls category once again. In this series, Cole faced intense scrutiny from the public and the media after she rejected popular contestant Gamu Nhengu to go through to the live shows in favour of Cher Lloyd and Katie Waissel, even though both had fluffed their performances at judges’ houses. Cole also receive more criticism after she refused to vote for an act in the fifth week, which resulted in claims that the show was fixed. This series would also mark the first that Cole was not the winning mentor, after a contestant in her category, Rebecca Ferguson, lost out to Matt Cardle, who was mentored by Dannii Minogue.
On 5 May 2011, it was officially announced after months of speculation that Cole would appear as a judge alongside Simon Cowell, L.A. Reid, and Paula Abdul on the American version of The X Factor. However, after only three weeks as a judge and completing the auditions in Los Angeles and Chicago, Cole departed the show following rumours she had been sacked.
Cole is set to release her third solo album A Million Lights on the 18 June 2012, with lead single “Call My Name” released on May 18, 2012. The single was written and produced by Calvin Harris and the music video for the single was directed by Anthony Mandler and shot in Downtown Los Angeles.
Cole has become a recognised and photographed style icon; referred to as a fashionista by the press. She has been photographed for the covers of British Vogue, Elle and Harper’s Bazaar, while also becoming the new face of cosmetic company L’Oréal in late 2009. However, her recent advertising campaign promoting the L’Oréal Elvive shampoo and conditioner range attracted criticism amid claims that she had deliberately deceived persons wishing to buy the product, since it shows Cole with hair extensions.
Cheryl has been involved in a number of charitable activities. Most notable were in March 2009 when she climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in aid of Comic Relief with a group of other celebrities. The trek raised £3.4 million for the charity. Between 3 February and 23 March 2009, Cole raised money for Comic Relief by providing the voice for the BT Speaking Clock. In February 2011, Cole launched her own charitable foundation with The Prince’s Trust following a meeting with The Trust’s President, HRH Charles, Prince of Wales. The Cheryl Cole Foundation will provide vital funds for The Trust in the North East, helping disadvantaged young people from Cole’s region. On 13 June 2011, she auctioned 20 dresses with ASOS to raise funds for the foundation.
Images reproduced from fanpop.com and brandrepublic.com
Videos reproduced from YouTube / helpingyousave and YouTube / CherylColeVEVO
Biography text reproduced from Wikipedia under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License
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