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Sarah's next song is out of this world

Sarah's next song is out of this world

Soprano Sarah Brightman is looking forward to hitting her highest note yet - she's set to sing a song in space this autumn.

The renowned stage musical star, pictured here in classy black tights , plans the unique trip from Russia on September 1.

Brightman, 54, who was chatting with presenter Carol Vorderman, has been collaborating with Andrew Lloyd Webber, her ex-husband, on the tune.

She is expected to board a Soyuz spaceship and be on the International Space Station (ISS) for 10 days after receiving Star City training outside Moscow.

The space station will moor 420km (260 miles) over the Earth.

Brightman told reporters in London on Tuesday (March 10) that she wanted the song, recorded last week at New York studios, to be ideally suited for space.

Wearing studious dark-rimmed specs and an elegant black dress, she said she wanted a message that is "simple" and "beautiful".

But she added that singing above Earth in microgravity will be "very different" from performing on it.

Brightman said she wants to link with Earth-bound singers or musicians, even children or a choir.

Frost warms charity fundraising gala

Frost warms charity fundraising gala

A famous movie vampire got her teeth stuck into her latest role with relish this week - an arts charity fundraiser.

Sadie Frost was among an all-star gathering at the Roundhouse venue in London's Chalk Farm on Thursday night.

The Bram Stoker's Dracula actress, seen wearing glam black tights and stylish blue coat, spoke of her affection for the concert and arts destination.

The 49-year-old Roundhouse Ambassador said the Roundhouse charity helps youngsters in the community by giving them opportunities.

Other guests included songstress Charlotte Church and comic Rob Brydon. Church returned to the limelight at the fundraiser where she embraced the Roundhouse's Seventies style season.

Brydon, ahead of his dwarf role in the forthcoming movie The Huntsman, treated attendees to a version of Drown In My Own Tears.

The fundraiser had already started prior to the main live event via an internet auction with some spectacular prizes.

These included a guitar from Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood, artwork from Bob Dylan, Noel Fielding and Damien Hirst, plus acting lessons courtesy of Adrian Lester.

Blackheath expects autumnal Madness

Blackheath expects autumnal Madness

Madness will co-headline an iconic London music festival this autumn.

The veteran ska band, famous for hits such as Our House and Baggy Trousers, reminded people they are also famous for their wacky headwear too.

Band members Mark Bedford and Chris Foreman wore stylish hats during a photocall to publicise the 2015 On Blackheath event. Madness said via a statement they wished to thank Blackheath's people for inviting them there.

The south-east London show, being staged on the weekend of September 12 and 13, will also welcome the Manic Street Preachers and Elbow as headliners.

In addition, Laura Mvula, Anna Calvi and Kelis will be appearing. A food village and pop-restaurants should add to the appeal of the event, which is allowing in children under 12 for free.

Last year the Blackheath Common concert featured stars such as Frank Turner, Future Islands, Massive Attack and Grace Jones.

Tickets, which went on sale from February 20, start from £45 for adults.

Ab-Fab star gets a new roll for charity

Ab-Fab star gets a new roll for charity

Absolutely Fabulous and New Avengers star Joanna Lumley got her teeth into a new "roll" this week - all in the name of charity.

Lumley, donning an old school, jaunty hat , launched a nationwide wooden barrel-rolling relay on Monday.

The roll, starting at Perthshire's famous distillery Blair Athol, is in aid of the Help for Heroes charity.

Lumley, 68, who also wore patterned trousers and stylish square-patterned jacket, fronted the 517-mile (832km) Barrel of Laughs launch, courtesy of Bell's.

The celebrity-studded nine-day trek will see Rod Edmond, a personal trainer, attempt to push the barrel to Wiltshire's Tedworth House, the charity's recovery centre.

Rufus Hound, Mark Dolan and Fred MacAulay will be among the comedians and veterans who assist Edmond, as well as performing free pub stand-up gigs en route.

Lumley said she was extremely proud that the charity chose her to launch the event.

She aped her Ab-Fab Patsy character to say "Cheers, sweeties".

Clarkson test drives spot as new 1D star?

Clarkson test drives spot as new 1D star?

Sacked Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson is in the driving seat to become One Direction's replacement for Zayn Malik - tongue-in-cheek social media jokes are suggesting.

Internet users have already given the car expert's head a test drive on Malik's body in Photoshopped images as part of the many quips flooding the net.

Clarkson, pictured here near his house on his bike wearing a grey beanie hat after the BBC announcement, learned he would not be having his contract renewed by the motoring show on Wednesday.

Later that afternoon it was revealed that 22-year-old Zayn would be parting company with 1D. The band's handlers said they would carry on with four members.

Images of 54-year-old Clarkson have also been superimposed onto publicity shots of the band as well as stage performances next to Harry Styles.

The BBC's director general, Lord Hall made the announcement of the parting of ways after Clarkson allegedly punched Oisin Tymon, his producer.

Nolan's Interstellar wins stellar award

Nolan's Interstellar wins stellar award

A sci-fi blockbuster directed by Christopher Nolan has won the Jameson Empire Film Awards' Best Film gong.

Nolan attended the prestigious ceremony at Grosvenor House, London, with Emma Thomas, his wife who is pictured here in black tights and a red dress, and Jessica Chastain.

Chastain stars in Interstellar alongside Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway and Michael Caine.

Nolan also won a special Empire Inspiration award honouring the films he has directed, which include Inception, Batman Begins and Memento.

Interstellar beat off the challenge from highly rated movies such as The Imitation Game and Boyhood.

Other winners at the event, which was hosted by James Nesbitt, included Taron Egerton, The Babadook, Paddington and Ralph Fiennes. Egerton burst on to the scene for his performance as Eggsy in Kingsman: The Secret Service.

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Corrie Star announces she's pregnant

Corrie Star announces she's pregnant

One of Coronation Street's best known stars has told her social media followers she is expecting another baby.

Samia Ghadie, pictured here at the British Soap Awards wearing a black dress and pair of tights , has one child already, daughter Freya.

Ghadie, 32, announced the news on Twitter. This will be her first baby with boyfriend Sylvain Longchambon, the 34-year-old ice dancer who also retweeted the news.

Ghadie, who plays Maria Connor in the long-running ITV1 soap, had earlier been quoted as saying she wanted a child with her French partner.

She said that Longchambon is "great" around children.

The Manchester-born actress met Longchambon when they were paired up on Dancing On Ice three years ago.

The Corrie star started acting when she was only 11 years old in a one-off role in Robbie Coltrane's crime drama Cracker and went on to appear in Heartbeat and Doctors.

Ghadie had Freya with Matthew Smith, her property developer ex-husband.

Tickets snapped up for Radio 1 event

Tickets snapped up for Radio 1 event

It took less than an hour for all the tickets to Radio 1's Big Weekend in Norwich to be snapped up.

Booking opened at 8.05am this morning on a first come, first served basis online. Some 55% of the tickets, which are free, are available to local people living in the area covered by Norwich City Council.

So far Radio 1 has confirmed American star Taylor Swift, British band Years & Years and Welsh rockers Catfish and the Bottlemen on the line-up.

Florence Welch, pictured here in black tights , will also appear at the event with her band Florence and the Machine.

Radio 1 said that in total 50,000 tickets were available - 25,000 for each day. Tickets for the wider UK were snapped up within around 15 minutes, while those reserved for residents living in Norwich were gone half an hour later.

The long-running event, which is based in a different location around the country each year, will take place at Earlham Park in Norwich on May 23 and 24. Coverage of the event will be on BBC Three and Radio 1.

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United boss believes in socks equality

United boss believes in socks equality

If Manchester United end this season trophyless it won't be for want of team bonding.

That prospect became a virtual certainty after the recent FA Cup exit against Arsenal - unless they can make up a 10 point-gap on Premier League leaders Chelsea.

Manager Louis Van Gaal likes his players to do most things the same on and off the field - even wearing the same football socks .

The 63-year-old Dutch disciplinarian also prefers his squad to speak the same language (English, naturally), eat meals together and wear identical clothes - not just socks.

His former Bayern Munich players recall Van Gaal making them sit bolt upright when eating at the table and yanking anyone who didn't sit up in their chair.

He has since introduced fines of £1,000 for latecomers to lunch or training sessions at United.

But, with only 10 league games remaining, it seems that whatever approach Van Gaal attempts, it won't be enough to overhaul Chelsea.

McAvoy's delight at Olivier nomination

McAvoy's delight at Olivier nomination

Olivier nominee James McAvoy says portraying an eccentric aristocrat in The Ruling Class is the hardest thing he's ever done.

McAvoy was at a photocall with co-star Leslie Manville, who was sporting a pair of dark black tights with a stylish monochrome dress.

Speaking at the event at the Rosewood hotel in London, he said he was delighted to land a nomination for his part in the West End production. He'll compete against a strong line-up in the Best Actor category, with Mark Strong (A View from the Bridge), Richard Armitage (The Crucible) and Tim Pigott-Smith (King Charles III) all nominated.

Also at the event was pop star Nicole Scherzinger, who is nominated in the Best Actress in a Supporting Role category for her portrayal of Grizabella in Andrew Lloyd Webber's revival of Cats.

It's the American star's first ever appearance on stage, but she has attracted plenty of praise, including from Lloyd Webber himself.

Also at the photocall was Gillian Anderson, Mark Strong and Gemma Arterton. The winners will be announced at the Royal Opera House on Sunday, April 12.

Dell-ightful Nancy attends charity auction

Dell-ightful Nancy attends charity auction

The stars have come out in force to help an HIV charity's fundraising event this week.

Model Jerry Hall, writer Phil Turner and Anglo-Italian lawyer Nancy Dell'Olio were among the celebrities attending the Terrence Higgins Trust auction at London's Christie's.

Dell'Olio stole the show in classic black tights , uber-high heels, and skimpy black and yellow dress. The 53-year-old former girlfriend of ex-England football manager Sven-Goran Eriksson is heavily involved in charities, including Truce International.

The event saw a series of extravagant lots go under the hammer, including a tour of the home of David Furnish and Elton John.

Rare artwork, top-of-the-range fashion designs and luxury holidays were also on offer.

Hall turned up with Armand Leroi, the evolutionary biologist who many social observers believe is the new man in her life.

Leading Christie's official Jussi Pylkkanen was the auction's master of ceremonies at Thursday's event.

Socks 'help reduce phantom limb pain'

Socks 'help reduce phantom limb pain'

Socks made from a special fabric can be used to treat phantom limb pain.

New research shows that socks using Umbrellan technology - a knitted fabric material created in Germany combining elasticity with an electromagnetic screen - helps to reduce the pain commonly experienced by amputees.

The eight participants each kept a daily record over the course of nine weeks. Six of them experienced less phantom limb pain after wearing the socks. One patient had phantom limb pain equal to pre-study levels and the other experienced increased phantom limb pain.

Qualitative data gathered from questionnaires at the beginning and end of the study, plus four months down the line, showed a meaningful reduction in pain for all of the participants.

The findings, which were presented at the American Association of Orthotists and Prosthetists Annual Meeting, could be good news for amputees as 80% to 85% of patients will encounter phantom limb pain at some point after amputation.

Corrie stars among Mum awards guests

Corrie stars among Mum awards guests

Fearne Cotton made a radiant arrival at the Tesco Mum Of The Year Awards.

The 33-year-old TV personality, who recently announced that she and her husband Jesse Wood are expecting their second child together, wowed in a floral yellow dress complete with a lace trim and peep-hole cut-outs.

Sally Dynevor, who plays Sally Webster in Coronation Street, was among the other celebrities at the event on Sunday. She arrived at London's up-scale Savoy hotel flanked by two of her three children wearing black tights and a black, long-sleeved top to match.

Also spotted at the glamorous ceremony was mother-of-two Michelle Heaton, 35, sporting an electric blue backless gown with a plunging neckline and cut-out straps, plus DJ Sara Cox and actress Jennifer Metcalfe.

But it was Cotton who stole most of the attention on the red carpet. As well as revealing the news about her second pregnancy, she confirmed that she has decided to leave her role at BBC Radio 1 after 10 years.

Theatre fundraiser pulls glitzy crowd

Theatre fundraiser pulls glitzy crowd

The stars were out in force on Wednesday night for The National Theatre's fundraising gala, Fast Forward.

Some of the biggest names from the worlds of film, television and fashion were spotted on the red carpet at The National Theatre in London.

Actor Ciaran Hinds, from blockbusters like Road to Perdition, There Will Be Blood and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, arrived in a flat cap and stylish men's scarf , while actress Jane Seymour sparkled in a black fitted gown and feathered shawl.

Editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine Anna Wintour also showed off her fashion credentials by wearing a stunning floor-length black and white dress with a fur-effect bolero coat.

Sir David Hare, Luke Treadaway, Nicole Farhi and Olivia Colman were among the other guests at the star-studded bash.

Colman, who currently stars as Ellie Miller in ITV's smash hit Broadchurch, stood out in an olive dress as she showed off her baby bump. The 41-year-old actress is expecting her third child with novelist husband Ed Sinclair.

An odd way to raise money for charity

An odd way to raise money for charity

A North East charity's weekend fundraising idea later this month can be fairly described as "odd".

That's because Education Centre for Children with Down syndrome (Eccds) is urging people throughout the region to wear odd socks to help increase awareness of the congenital disorder.

They can be walking socks, sports socks or standard cotton socks . The only rules are that they have to be an odd and eye-catching pair.

The Newton Aycliffe charity's challenge has been thrown open to colleges, schools, nurseries and companies across the weekend of March 20-21.

There's a serious message behind the fun, however. Eccds founder Maggie Hart said the idea is to show everyone that the syndrome's sufferers are the same as well as different.

Ms Hart said that the centre's children wish to be dealt with like everybody else and treated as an individual rather than someone with the condition.

The charity helps back the children and their loved ones via quick intervention and expert tips and assistance.

People can donate every time they wear odd socks.

Fashion on the Ration exhibition

Fashion on the Ration exhibition

A new exhibition at the Imperial War Museum demonstrates how people looked their best during the Second World War, and reveals that politicians encouraged them to do it.

There was much more to fashion between 1939 and 1945 than military uniforms. The Government said Britons should always look their best to improve the morale of the nation.

The best dressed women during the war wore tea dresses, tailored coats, stylish tights with back seams and had their hair pinned back. Men would typically wear trench coats and flat caps.

These styles and the way clothes were produced during the war have continued to influence designers and high street styles ever since.

The Imperial War Museum is marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two with an exhibition entitled Fashion on the Ration: 1940s Street Style, using the styles of the period to show people what life was like in those days.

It opens on Thursday and to publicise the start of the exhibition models mingled with the crowds in the fashions of the day, some wearing the back-seamed tights.

Holly's back to her pre-pregnancy shape

Holly's back to her pre-pregnancy shape

Holly Branson showed off her post-pregnancy figure at a big charity date this week.

The 33-year-old socialite helped to launch the We Day event with fellow co-chair Princess Beatrice on Thursday at Wembley's SSE Arena.

It is only three months since Holly, seen here wearing on-trend dark legwear , gave birth to twins Artie and Etta.

She looked back to her slender pre-pregnancy shape in her cream jacket, skinny black jeans and matching black blouse.

Both Holly and Princess Beatrice spoke to the movement's audience of how key it is to make friends and seek help from people around you.

They were among a host of celebrities at the motivational event which sought to inspire people from more than 550 schools, including 12,000 pupils and teachers.

As well as Holly, speakers and performers at the event included her businessman father Sir Richard, Dutch rapper Mr Probz and Hollywood star Martin Sheen.

Celebrities called on young attendees to get involved in helping with worldwide and local causes, bringing about "positive change".

Holly Willoughby to return to TV

Holly Willoughby to return to TV

Television presenter Holly Willoughby is set to make her much-anticipated return to our screens.

The 34-year-old recently became a mum for the third time and has been away on maternity leave from This Morning and Celebrity Juice.

She now has three sons - Harry, Belle and Chester - and admits she is far more content than ever before.

Willoughby, pictured here wearing tights alongside fellow television presenter Reggie Yates, will be picking up where she left off this month, returning to the sofa on This Morning plus as team captain on Celebrity Juice.

She says that having a big family was her one dream goal in life. With that accomplished, she says she is more than happy to return to work - and head out on a few nights out with friends - safe in the knowledge that her mum is always on hand to help out whenever she needs it.

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Summer gigs to end with a Bang Bang

Summer gigs to end with a Bang Bang

Jessie J will close one of London's most spectacular summer concerts, it has been announced.

The Bang Bang singer, pictured here in a short, black sleeveless dress, matching shoes and fishnet socks , has been pencilled in for July 19.

She will join James Bay and George Ezra among the big names scheduled for the 2015 summer series staged at the capital's Somerset House from July 9 to 19.

Tickets go on sale at the end of the week, priced £29.50, not including booking fees.

Jessie has gone from strength to strength since Who You Are, her first album, topped the charts.

Sweet Talker, her latest album, has already been a smash hit worldwide.

The 26-year-old Londoner joins an eclectic line-up set to entertain music lovers for 11 nights at the iconic landmark.

Chromeo is opening the series with Gary Clark Jr and Passenger playing the following nights.

Other stars due to perform include Kwabs, Nick Mulvey and Chronixx.

Revellers can book their tickets from 9am on Friday (March 20).

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Potter fans Express true love

Potter fans Express true love

A new Harry Potter tourist attraction cast its spell over a celebrity couple this week.

Louis Smith and Lucy Mecklenburgh were the first people to enjoy the latest addition to the Hertfordshire themed studio tour on Tuesday March 17.

Louis, seen here suitably turned out in a Potteresque striped men's scarf , said he loved the Hogwarts Express.

It contains not only the movie's original steam engine but a faithful recreation of its famous Platform 9 3/4.

The 25-year-old gymnast has been dating reality star Lucy, 23, since meeting on the set of Tumble, where he was one of the judges and she was a contestant.

Louis this week found a special wand to throw himself completely into the part on the Potter platform.

Lucy wore a scarlet mini dress to match the train itself, paying testament to the rigorous fitness regime she has undertaken recently.

The one-time TOWIE star also wore twisted ringlets, black sandals and matching Chanel handbag.

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There's gold in them there socks...

There's gold in them there socks...

A man could briefly claim to possess probably the most expensive socks in all of Russia - worth over £116,000.

But Bagaudin Estermirov's brush with the three novelty socks with a difference came to no good. They landed him with a suspended jail sentence.

Estermirov, from Far East Russia's Amur region, found the black-hued jersey socks in a roadside bush in Zeya and noticed they were far heavier than usual.

That's because they were weighed down with 18 blocks of gold, according to the news agency Interfax. Each one weighed around 8kg (1st 3lb) and their worth in rubles was valued at a total of 10.5 million (£116,184).

Estermirov got into trouble after ferreting them away under his car seat, rather than reporting the find to police. Law enforcers rumbled him and on Tuesday he pleaded guilty to illegally possessing the precious metal.

District court officials sentenced him to a suspended two-year jail term. Russian state coffers are now in possession of the gold.

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