Natalie Bassingthwaighte (/ˈbæsɪŋɡθwæɪt/; born 1 September 1975) is an Australian recording artist, actress, and television personality. Bassingthwaighte was born and raised in Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia. She rose to fame in 1998 when she began her television acting career on TV series, All Saints. She then went on to guest star in the programme Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World in 2000. Bassingthwaighte is currently signed to Sony Music Australia. From 2004 to 2008, she was also the lead singer of band Rogue Traders.
In 2006, Bassingthwaighte released a cover of "Don't Give Up" with Shannon Noll--which went Platinum in Australia. In 2008, Bassingthwaighte left the Rogue Traders to pursue a solo career, she went on to release debut album, 1000 Stars, in 2009, which debuted at number-one on the Australian Albums Chart and spawned a number of top-ten singles in Australia--"Alive" and "Someday Soon"--both singles gained a platinum status by the ARIA. The album also saw release from singles--"1000 Stars" and "Love Like This". "All We Have" was released as the first single from Bassingthwaighte's second album, which is due for release in 2013. Within her time in the industry, Bassingthwaighte has received a number of award nominations including: APRA Awards, Logie Award as well as Nickelodeon Australian Kids' Choice Awards.
Before her music career, Bassingthwaighte has also enjoyed a successful acting career. She played Izzy Hoyland on the Australian soap opera Neighbours between 2003 and 2007. In 2009, she also starred in Australian film Prey. Bassingthwaighte wrote the book Sistahood: A Journal of Self-Discovery with her younger sister.
In 2008, Bassingthwaighte began a career in reality television, when she joined So You Think You Can Dance Australia as the host of the show, until 2010 when the show was axed from television. In mid-2011, she joined The X Factor Australia as a judge and mentor. Bassingthwaighte has been married twice; in 1998 she married Graham Wilmott, a chef from Wollongong; the pair were divorced after two years of marriage. In December 2011, she married her Rogue Traders' bandmate Cameron McGlinchey. Bassingthwaighte gave birth to a daughter in August 2010, Harper Rain Sinclair McGlinchey. In November 2012, Bassingthwaighte confirmed she and McGlinchey were expecting their second child. Bassingthwaighte gave birth to a son Hendrix John Hickson McGlinchey in May 2013.
Early life and career beginnings:
Natalie Bassingthwaighte was born on 1 September 1975 in Wollongong, New South Wales to Betty (born ca. 1953) and Michael Bassingthwaighte (AM) (born ca. 1952). Betty has worked as a theatre nurse, beauty therapist and hairdresser. Since 1982 Michael has worked as the CEO of a health care insurance provider. Bassingthwaighte grew up in the suburb of Mount Warrigal as the second of four girls with her older sister Melinda (born ca. 1974) and the twins, Lisa and Nicole (born ca. 1982). From a young age, she used to charge 20c for family and friends to come and see her dress up and put on mini concerts. Bassingthwaighte got her first role in a primary school production at Balarang Primary School of Peter Pan, playing the character Tinker Bell. She enrolled at Wollongong High School of the Performing Arts and graduated from the Australian College of Entertainment. At 161 cm (5 ft 3 in) tall, Natalie Bassingthwaighte is described as "pint-sized" and "tiny". During adolescence she was bullied at school, where she was teased about her body shape and lack of development. In late 1998 she married Graham Wilmott, a chef from Wollongong, the couple were together for two years.
After college, Bassingthwaighte successfully auditioned for a job at a theme park, Wonderland Sydney. She participated in a variety of performances, including 1950s, 1970s, country and Hanna Barbara shows. After working at Wonderland Sydney, Bassingthwaighte performed for two seasons as lead vocalist and stand up comic at the Kaos Comedy Theatre restaurant in Sydney. During that time she auditioned for other musicals. Bassingthwaighte was chosen from over 6000 people for the role as Mrs. Cohen in the Australian tour of the rock musical, Rent (1999). During Rent's tour, she auditioned for another stage production, Chicago. The casting directors were initially dubious given that she was not an A-List dancer, however she won the role of June and understudied the principal role of Roxie Hart. In 2002, during Chicago's run in Perth, Bassingthwaighte and some cast and crew members decided to visit The Pinnacles, a limestone formation and tourist attraction about 190 kilometres (120 mi) north-west of Perth. On the way there they became lost and their 4WD broke down - they were rescued by a Navy helicopter. Her first lead role was in the Asian production Chang & Eng - it depicts the biography of the first Siamese twins - she portrayed Adelaide Yates in both the Singapore and Bangkok seasons of the show.
2003-10: Acting career and Neighbours:
Natalie Bassingthwaighte's first television role as an actress was in a 1998 episode of the hospital-based drama series All Saints. In 2000 she had a guest appearance in an episode of The Lost World, playing the role of Raina. Her first telemovie role was in the United States production, Counterstrike, playing the character of Kelly. She gained greater popular acclaim on the Australian soap opera Neighbours, playing the role of Izzy Hoyland from 2003 to 2006. This was her first full-time television role. Initially Bassingthwaighte was hesitant to audition for Neighbours, "I said to my manager, 'No way'. I'd made the decision I'd done my last theatre show for a while, I wanted to concentrate on singing and I wanted to give film a go. We were all a little bit over the soapie star-turned singer. I didn't want to be that". However, her manager convinced her to reconsider, "I realised it was something I was interested in doing if I could stop worrying about what people might think". Upon securing the role, she relocated from Sydney to Melbourne. Bassingthwaighte was nominated for a Gold Logie Award for Most Popular Personality and a Silver Logie Award for "Best Actress" in 2006, for her role on the show. Bassingthwaighte left Neighbours in 2006 to focus on her music career and filmed her final scenes on 2 June. In March 2007, she reprised her role as Izzy Hoyland in scenes shot while on location in London in November 2006.
In 2004, Bassingthwaighte filmed a part in Rohan Sprong's student film When Darkness Falls - it was released in 2006 after editing. She portrays the character of Jinx De-Luxe, which involved a performance of the Marilyn Monroe song "Every Baby Needs a Da-da-daddy". In 2009 she starred in the Australian horror film Prey alongside Jesse Johnson, Christian Clark and Nicholas Bell, playing the role of Kate, an ambitious young surgeon working in the emergency department of a major city hospital. Part of the plot concerned three couples who become lost in outback Western Australia - Bassingthwaighte remembered similarities to her trip to The Pinnacles. The film was directed by George T. Miller and grossed $744 at the box office in Australia. In July 2010, for DVD release in the US, it was re-titled as The Outback. From April to June 2010 she starred in the 13-part television crime mini-series, Underbelly: The Golden Mile, playing the role of Maria Haken, the wife of Trevor Haken who is a corrupt Kings Cross detective. The Hakens are a real-life couple, where the husband, Trevor, became an informant and witness at the Wood Royal Commission into police corruption. Bassingthwaighte's character is described as "the adulterous and neglected wife" and her husband's "drinking and neglect led her to begin an affair with another police officer".
2004-08: Music career and Rogue Traders era:
Bassingthwaighte had considered a music career for some years and had been a member of an R&B group, but it did not work out and her interest focused on other options. By 2004 she began working on her own demos: songs with an acoustic-rock sound and, late that year, she was recruited as the lead singer for Australian electro-pop band, Rogue Traders. Rogue Traders had formed in 2002 with James Ash on keyboards and Steve Davis on guitars, the group had used a variety of guest vocalists and issued a debut album before seeking a permanent singer. After being presented with the band's music, Bassingthwaighte auditioned for Ash and Davis. The pair had auditioned 15 to 20 candidates, and after she performed their song "Voodoo Child", she became the band's front woman. In May 2005, the band released "Voodoo Child" as their fifth single - the first with Bassingwaighte - which reached number four on the ARIA Singles Chart and was certified platinum for shipment of 70,000 units in Australia. "Voodoo Child" also reached number seven on the New Zealand Singles Chart, number three on the UK Singles Chart and number fifteen on the Irish Singles Chart. The single won the award for "Best Dance Video" at the 2006 MTV Australia Awards. The follow-up singles "Way to Go!" and "Watching You" also reached the ARIA top ten and both were certified gold for shipment of 35,000 units. In October 2005, the group issued their second studio album, Here Come the Drums, which reached number two on the ARIA Albums Chart and spent a total of seventy-four weeks in the Top 50. It was certified 4× platinum and became their most successful album. The album received four nominations at the ARIA Music Awards of 2006 for "Breakthrough Artist - Album", "Best Pop Release", "Highest Selling Album" and "Best Group".
In October 2007 Rogue Traders released their third album, Better in the Dark, which spawned the hit singles "Don't You Wanna Feel" and "I Never Liked You" - both were certified gold, and "What You're On". The album debuted on the ARIA Albums Chart at number four and gained a platinum accreditation. For this album, Bassingthwaighte is credited as a co-composer for five of its twelve tracks, including all three singles. She worked with Ash and his wife Melinda Appleby on some tracks, "we'd sit in a room and throw ideas around ... It was interesting that all three of us instinctively knew when we had a great idea". At the APRA Awards of 2009, "Don't You Wanna Feel" was nominated as Dance Work of the Year. In June 2008, Bassingthwaighte left the group to pursue her solo career. In November 2009 Rogue Traders announced her replacement as Mindi Jackson.
2008-10: Solo career, 1000 Stars and motherhood:
While Bassingthwaighte was still a member of Rogue Traders, she also made solo appearances and releases. In December 2006 she performed a duet with label mate Shannon Noll on their cover version of Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush's "Don't Give Up", for the various artists' album Home: Songs of Hope & Journey. Noll and Bassingthwaighte's version reached number two on the ARIA Singles Chart. She recorded "O Holy Night" for the album The Spirit of Christmas 2006, a Christmas compilation album for which all proceeds go to The Salvation Army in Australia. In 2007 Bassingthwaighte and Noll teamed up again for "Please Come Home for Christmas" on the album, The Spirit of Christmas 2007. In June 2008, Natalie Bassingthwaighte began working on her debut solo album,titled 1000 Stars. In 2006 she had signed a recording contract with Sony Music Australia to embark on a solo career. In October 2008, the album's lead single, "Alive", was released; it peaked at number eight on the ARIA Singles Chart and gained a platinum certificate. In January 2009 a second single, "Someday Soon", was issued which became Bassingthwaighte's third top ten single on the ARIA Charts and was also certified platinum. On 20 February the album appeared as a digital download. It debuted on the ARIA Albums Chart at number one and was certified gold. In April 2009 the album's title track was released as the third single. It reached number thirty on the ARIA Singles Chart. "Not For You" was released in July 2009 as the fourth single and it failed to chart. The fifth single, "Love Like This", appeared in January 2010, which reached the Top 100. It was used to raise awareness by the Aids Council of New South Wales for the 'Wear It With Pride' t-shirt campaign in the lead-up to that year's Sydney Mardi Gras parade. For 1000 Stars, Bassingthwaighte co-composed seven of its fifteen tracks, including the first two singles, "Alive" and "Someday Soon".
In April 2008 Bassingthwaighte released her first book, Sistahood: A Journal of Self-Discovery. It was co-written, over two years, with her younger sister Nicole Moore, and is aimed at boosting teen and pre-teen girls' self-esteem. The book features activities and is filled with pictures of Bassingthwaighte's life with her three sisters: Moore, Lisa Fogarty and Melinda Sheldrick. Bassingthwaighte is often referred to as Nat Bass in the media and by fans. Bassingwaighte revealed that after she released the album, she was thinking about quitting the music industry. She said; "I wasn't inspired by music for a long time, I didn't really know where I wanted to go with it or even if I would go back and pursue it. I'd had Harper, I just felt so content with life. In 2008, Bassingthwaighte made her debut as a television presenter, hosting the Australian version of So You Think You Can Dance. She hosted the show for three seasons and received two nominations at the 2009 Logie Awards for a Gold Logie Award for "Most Popular Personality" and a Silver Logie Award for "Most Popular Presenter". She received another nomination for "Most Popular Presenter" at the 2010 Logie Awards. In August 2010, Bassingwaighte and her long-time boyfriend, Cameron McGlinchey welcomed the birth of their daughter, weighing 3.22 kg at a private Melbourne hospital. She named her daughter Harper Rain Sinclair McGlinchey.
2011-present: Marriage, second studio album and The X Factor:
In January 2011, Natalie Bassingthwaighte returned to theatre, performing at the Sydney Opera House, in Love, Loss and What I Wore, a play "about women, their relationships and memories", where she co-starred with Judi Farr, Mirrah Foulkes, Amanda Muggleton and Magda Szubanski. In mid-2011, it was announced that she would join the judging panel of The X Factor Australia, replacing Natalie Imbruglia as a judge and mentor on the show, joining Guy Sebastian, Melanie Brown and Ronan Keating for the third series. She was given the Over25s category to mentor and selected Andrew Wishart, Cleo Howman and Mitchell Callaway for the live finals--a series of ten weekly live shows in which contestants are progressively eliminated by public vote. After Howman's elimination in Week 1 and Callaway's elimination in Week 6, Wishart became Bassingthwaighte's last act, he later placed runner up. On 28 August 2011, Bassingthwaighte told The Daily Telegraph that she had recorded several new tracks, with her first single, "All We Have", expected to be released soon. She said, "Everything is coming together ... I did lose my mojo for a while, I just didn't believe in doing something unless you're totally up for it. I wasn't feeling creative and then, suddenly, it was Christmas and it just felt right". Her record label uploaded a dance version of the track to their SoundCloud account on 3 September. "All We Have" was released for digital download on 30 September. Bassingthwaighte performed the song on The X Factor. On 4 December 2011, Bassingthwaighte and McGlinchey married with their daughter, Harper as an attendant.
In February 2012, Bassingthwaighte was announced as a Moomba Monarch alongside Harry Kewell, the Australian socceroo. In late March and early April 2012, she travelled to Bangladesh as an ambassador for Vicks Australia and Save the Children's project, Breathe for Life, which highlighted pneumonia-infected children and their parents' inability to afford health care. She encouraged fellow Australians to support the project to train health workers, village doctors and caregivers and reduce the impact of pneumonia. Bassingthwaighte returned for a fourth series of X Factor. This time she was given the Girls category and selected Angel Tupai, Bella Ferraro and Shiane Hawke as her Live Show contenders. After Tupai's elimination in Week 5 and Hawke's in Week 8, Ferraro became Bassingthwaighte's final act. However she was also eliminated in Week 9. In May 2013, Bassingthwaighte gave birth to her second child, Hendrix John Hickson McGlinchey. In 2013, Bassingthwaighte returned as a judge on The X Factor Australia, mentoring the 'Groups' category. Her final three contenders that year were Adira-Belle, JTR & Third D3gree. After Adira-Belle's elimination in Week 1 and JTR's in Week 6 which was the week she had both her groups in the bottom two, Third D3gree became her last act. They alongside Bella Ferraro from the previous series were eliminated in Week 9.