Belfast Telegraph

Andrea Magee's bound for X-Factor stardom Any Minute Now

By Dave Whelan

She started off learning to play the flute as a young girl in Glengormley Primary School and now one north Belfast woman has used her own unique brand of music to blow away the judges on this year's X-factor competition.

Andrea Magee, a classically trained, singer-songwriter from the Antrim Road will appear at the boot camp stage of the series, due to air this weekend, after impressing with a mixture of her own compositions accompanied by the flute and bodhran.

The former teacher performed her own song Any Minute Now to make it through the room stage shown on Saturday night and adapted a unique take of The Eurythmics' hit single There Must Be An Angel for her Wembley Arena second stage.

For Andrea it is all about maintaining the style and music she has shaped from her early roots.

"I've been gigging from about the age of seven, when we used to visit Donegal and my family used to perform as a folk band," she told the Community Telegraph.

"I'm classically trained but I've always had my own individuality and been able to put my own stamp on music, which is what I love.

"I gave up my job as a teacher to focus solely on music a few years ago and since then I've had doors open and close for getting my style of music out there.

"People suggested the X-Factor as a route to take but I was always sceptical because I am different from the usual contestants that appear and was unsure whether they would try and change what I do.

"Thankfully after deciding to give it a go, it's been a great experience and the judges really took on board what I was about and what I was trying to do. "

Andrea is no stranger to TV talent shows after making it to the final 25 in BBC 1's Fame Academy almost 10 years ago at the age of 18.

"Doing the show was a great experience and a steep learning curve but it really made me realise that I was too young and not ready.

"It was a boost to know that I got so far in the show but if I'm honest on reflection I realise that it wouldn't have done the longevity of my career any good.

"I've had the time now to develop what I do, I don't want to be the girl that releases one single and then fades away, I want people to appreciate the music that I've created and understand that I do it my own way."

The boot stage camp will be aired on television this weekend, when contestants will find out whether they have made it through to the next stage which will be at the houses of the four judges.

"I play several instruments, including the flute, the bodhran, the guitar and even the whistles so hopefully I still have a lot to offer in the next stage," added Andrea.

Meanwhile, that other Glengormley songbird, Andrea McFall is busy working on her album after a meteoric showing on the BBC talent show The Voice earlier this year.

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