British pop singer Jessie J has won China’s equivalent of The X Factor after dazzling millions with her rendition of Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You in the competition’s final.
The 30-year-old from east London, who was previously a judge on The Voice UK, said she wanted to do something “unexpected” and “bridge a gap between two cultures”.
She went up against other professional singers from across Asia as a contestant on the show – called Singer – to take the 2018 crown, singing some of her own songs in the process.
Following her win, she wrote on Instagram: “Last year I was asked to compete in a singing competition in China. Performing alongside the biggest established singers / artists across Asia. I was the first international artist to ever be asked / compete. An honour alone.
“I know a lot of people were shocked when they found out. Like why would I compete in a singing competition… I’m probably the least competitive person I know. I said yes because I LOVE to do the unexpected and I LOVE to represent the UK and singing everywhere I go.
“I LOVE to sing. But also it was an opportunity to bridge a gap between two cultures. For them to see a western performer and hear music some had never heard before and visa versa. For the performances to be seen by millions outside of China and vice versa.”
Jessie J said she felt “loved” during her three-and-a-half months in China.
“Seeing the boundaries break down and the rules be shifted made this whole experience incredible,” she added. “China is an amazing place and so different to anywhere I have ever been. I have never been made to feel more welcomed and loved as I have done here.”
The singer said she hoped she would not be the last “international artist” on the show, which reportedly saw about a billion viewers tune in.
“I won the show last night. But what we all won was the beginning of something really magical,” she said. “I am so happy I got to play a part.
“Here is to me being the first but not the last international artist to be on SINGER. And for the boundaries to continue to be broken.
“I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU! I still cant believe I came 1st! Last night a billion people watched the show. MAD.”