A Duet with Katherine Is My Big Goal

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), November 24, 2007 | Go to article overview

A Duet with Katherine Is My Big Goal


Byline: By Karen Price Western Mail

Sharon Osbourne may not be his number one fan, but Rhydian Roberts has won over millions of X Factor viewers. He reveals his ambitions to Karen Price

LOVE him or loathe him, one thing's for sure, Rhydian Roberts has one of the best voices on The X Factor.

And whether or not he goes on to win the series, the Welsh finalist has a clear career path - he wants to be the male equivalent of chart-topper Katherine Jenkins.

Classically trained Roberts is regarded as the "Marmite" contestant on the ITV series as viewers are divided on their feelings for him.

From the start, judge Sharon Osbourne voiced her dislike for him and in the initial stages, he came across as arrogant.

However, the 24-year-old, who is from Trallong, near Brecon, is now one of the favourites to follow in the footsteps of last year's winner Leona Lewis and take the X Factor crown.

His performance of You Raise Me Up even won over Mr Nasty - head judge Simon Cowell. He told him it was one of the best versions of the song that he'd ever heard.

But whether he's overall winner or not, Roberts is determined to make it big as a classical singer.

"My lifelong ambition has been to have a record contract," he says. "I would like a similar career to Katherine (Jenkins) - she trained classically and is a good ambassador for Wales.

"I would love to work with Katherine and it's been my goal to sing with her before I'm 25 - she's at the top of her game," adds Roberts, who reaches that milestone next Valentine's Day.

"And I would love to sing the National Anthem at the Millennium Stadium before a rugby game."

Roberts, who is surprisingly softly spoken, trained at a conservatoire in Birmingham and decided to apply for The X Factor as he felt it would be great exposure for him.

"I entered The X Factor because I'd just graduated - it wasn't for the fame but as a way of getting work in the future. It's a great opportunity."

During the initial auditions, although Roberts impressed Cowell and fellow judges Louis Walsh and Dannii Minogue, who is now his mentor, Osbourne was not won over by him and made some harsh comments. …

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