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Last Updated: Friday, 13 July 2007, 08:15 GMT 09:15 UK
Potts' spectacular rise to fame
By Michael Osborn
Entertainment reporter, BBC News

Paul Potts
Potts' transformation into a recording artist has been stellar

When shy, occasionally awkward mobile phone salesman Paul Potts swept to victory in Britain's Got Talent, the stuff of fairytales was played out on the small screen.

The 36-year-old's impressive operatic voice went on to land him a 1m recording contract, an extensive tour and a stellar rise from anonymity to becoming a household name.

The imminent prospect of releasing a debut album in 15 countries - including the US - is leaving Potts characteristically unassuming.

"It's a completely new experience for me, but it's just another job. It's a real privilege to make my hobby into a career, though," explains the tenor, who began exploring his vocal talents in 1999.

"If someone had told me I'd be recording an album in the space of the week, I'd have said 'don't be so silly!'

Paul Potts
Potts' rendition of Nessun Dorma impressed the public and judges

"It was fun, exciting and hard work and I'm pleased with the results," said Potts, who was promised by Britain's Got Talent judge and music mogul Simon Cowell after his win that he would be recording within a week.

The singer says that Cowell, who was one of his staunchest supporters during the show, has been in touch since signing him to his record label.

"He phoned me and told me he's very happy with the album and aware that I worked very hard on it. It was nice to get his supportive call."

Finished article

It may seem that Potts has fulfilled his life ambitions in spectacular style - but he still plans beyond scoring what is likely to be a hit album.

"My dream would be to play to role of Rodolfo in La Boheme," reveals the singer from Port Talbot in Wales. "I'm also going to keep improving my voice as I'm in no way the finished article yet.

Simon Cowell
Every time you come on stage I want you to do well. And you just did. It was magic
Talent judge Simon Cowell praises one of Paul Potts' auditions

"I don't ever want to be as good as I'm going to get as it's all downhill from there," he says.

"I'd like this to be more than a flash in the pan one album thing, but I'll enjoy it while it's there."

Bristol-born Potts rallied the public and Britain's Got Talent judges to his cause by seeming to be nervous before his auditions - and is now faced with the prospect of playing 20 sizeable venues across the UK.

"Once I get into my singing I'm fine, but I have to find a way of incorporating that into the way I talk," says the vocalist, who is planning to take stagecraft lessons to bolster his all-round performance.

'Don't be afraid'

Potts earned 100,000 for winning Britain's Got Talent, but there is little likelihood of this man blowing it all in a showbusiness-style bender - 35,000 will be used to clear debts and another 20,000 to cover the tax bill.

"Most of the remainder will go towards looking after my voice, and my wife and I may take a holiday when I next get a break," he explains.

"As for the fame, I'm going to take each day as it comes, keep my feet on the ground and try not to get sucked up in it all," adds the singer.

He closes on a word of advice for ordinary people hiding unusual talents who may be thinking of chasing a seemingly impossible dream.

"Don't be afraid of it, give it all you've got," says the mild-mannered - and now former - salesman.

One Chance by Paul Potts is released by Syco Music on 16 July.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
"Paul's such a nice guy and he deserves everything"



SEE ALSO
Tenor Potts grabs US record deal
05 Jul 07 |  Entertainment
Opera singer is TV talent winner
18 Jun 07 |  Entertainment

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