Catherington’s singing star celebrates success as she makes it through to the finals of ITV’s Starstruck talent contest - as she quashes ‘miming’ social media rumours

A SONGSTRESS from Horndean says she feels ‘very lucky’ to have made it through to the final of a televised talent contest - as she promises the show is ‘100 per cent live’ after viewers accused the performers of miming their songs.

Tuesday, 22nd February 2022, 2:05 pm
Updated Tuesday, 22nd February 2022, 2:06 pm

Following her performance as Cher on the ITV singing competition series Starstruck on February 19, talented singer Rachael Hawnt was delighted to learn that she had made it through to the final.

Hosted by X-Factor contender Olly Murs, the Starstruck contestants are transformed into an iconic music star for the night as part of a trio to then perform some famous hits.

The competitors fight it out against each other to reach the grand final and a chance to win £50,000.

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Professional musician Rachael Hawnt appeared on the new ITV show Starstruck.

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Singer and vocal coach Rachael said: ‘I feel very lucky, there’s just so much talent on there.

‘It was a massive surprise and I feel very lucky to have won it - I’m not taking it for granted.’

Winners in each round are determined by a virtual audience as well as real-life guests including Sheridan Smith, Beverley Knight and Adam Lambert.

Rachael feels 'very lucky' to have gone through to the finals.

There are a few more heats before the finals on April 2.

Rachael, who moved from Southsea to Catherington a couple of years ago, said that the experience of filming the show was ‘amazing’ and she has made ‘lifelong friends’ along the way.

She added: ‘What’s not to like - getting dressed up and having fun.’

As part of the show the singers not only have to sound and perform like their famous counterparts, but the ‘glam team’ at ITV work their magic to make sure each one resembles them.

Rachael said: ‘It was such a good laugh. I went in with no expectations whatsoever - I just did it for fun.

‘There’s so many talented people and they’re all just fantastic at what they do.

‘It’s refreshing to see a show where the judges are positive, they want it to be a joyous thing - there’s no putting people down. It’s all a happy vibe.’

After the last performance, some fans of the show made claims on social media that contestants were miming their songs.

Rachael wants to reassure them that this is not the case, and said: ‘There’s been this thing about miming, and they’re not - it’s 100 per cent live, it’s 100 per cent one take.

‘What you see is what they did. Everybody on there worked their socks off and gave it their all.’

As well as performing at gigs around the UK, Rachael also does vocal coaching in addition to writing and producing film and trailer music.

Rachael added: ‘I’d really like to say a great big thank you to my sister, Andrea Marshall, who was an absolute godsend and she put up with me being Cher for months.

‘I’d also like to thank my mum, Katie Keelin, and my partner Ash Cutler.’

The couple co-write and produce music from their Horndean studio.

To find out more about Rachael and see her upcoming gigs in Portsmouth visit her website at

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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