One Direction and pop divas set to draw in fans

Pop fans in Blackpool will be able to get up close and personal with their heroes as One Direction prepare to follow global superstars Adele, Rihanna and Katy Perry to the resort.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 17th July 2014, 4:00 pm
Waxing lyrical  Rihanna, Adele and Katy Perry arrive at Blackpool Madame Tussauds
Waxing lyrical Rihanna, Adele and Katy Perry arrive at Blackpool Madame Tussauds

The artists will not be here themselves for an unlikely series of concerts – but their lifelike waxworks have been secured by Madame Tussauds for three-month residencies.

Adele, Rihanna and Katy Perry arrived at the attraction this week and fans are already snapping selfies with the stars who stand side by side on a stage in the music area.

A surge in summer visitors, both to Blackpool and Madame Tussauds, is expected following the opening of the Queens of Pops display and that is likely to be maintained in September with the arrival of boyband One Direction.

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The figures, which cost £150,000 each to make, are driven to Blackpool by secure courier.

The Rihanna waxwork, which will be on display in the UK for the first time, arrived in Blackpool from Madame Tussauds Berlin, while Katy Perry came from Amsterdam and Adele made the journey north from London.

All three stars posed for the waxworks which are now six months old and were made over three or four months at a workshop in Acton, London.

The Adele wax figure wears a recreation of the black lace Clements Ribeiro frock she wore to the 2012 Grammy Awards.

Rihanna is dressed in a colourful ensemble inspired by her 2010 music video for Who’s That Chick.

And Katy Perry styles a quirky sequinned dress decorated with lollipops, similar to that worn during her 2011 world tour.

The One Direction figures, will be driven over from Vienna as part of a world tour, which has also taken in Sydney, New York and Amsterdam.

Tickets will be available at a date still to be confirmed for a special preview of the five waxworks on September 4, before they go on display to the general public the next day.

Matthew Titherington, general manager at Madame Tussauds Blackpool, said many visitors had asked for the boyband when completing the attraction’s questionnaire, and that there had also been an increase in people requesting international stars like Adele, Rihanna and Katy Perry.

“It’s brilliant that we’ve been able to get One Direction here for the autumn and to coincide with the Illuminations,” he said.

“I’m sure there will be a lot of teenage girls who will want to come and see them.

“Both this and the Queens of Pop display are more reasons for people to come to Blackpool and we do normally see an upsurge in visitor numbers of maybe 10-15 per cent when we get big stars in.

“It’s good for the resort, because visitors will then spend money elsewhere, too.

“We’re doing well at the moment, even with people taking to the beaches with the nice weather, and I think it’s because we’ve had a decent build-up of new arrivals all year with the likes of the Rovers Return display and Mo Farah.”

Mr Titherington said he had been first in the queue for a selfie with the Queens of Pop. He added: “People are posting them on Facebook and other social media and wowing their friends because they are just so lifelike.

“They look amazing, especially Rihanna, and we are getting a lot of wows.”

And what chance of the stars turning up in Blackpool to see their waxworks?

“We had the comedian Alan Carr knock on the door to see himself,” added Mr Titherington. “So you never know.”