Meet the real Ellie Goulding.
The "lass with the little voice" is how she was often described when her debut album, which included a delicate cover of Elton John's famous Your Song, flew to the No 1 spot in the UK in 2010.
Now splashed across the pages of every UK newspaper - most recently amid rumours of a new romance with actor Jeremy Irvine - Goulding doesn't see it. Not at first anyway.
"I just don't see myself as a celebrity," she says. "I don't like it. It makes me cringe. I'm a singer - that's what I do," she insists.
Casually dropping into conversation she spent last New Year's Eve "with Jessie" on a beach in Thailand -- yes, that's Jessie J, the other uber-famous UK pop singer, to the rest of us -- she's quick to explain. "My friends are just my friends," she said a little sheepishly, having stopped for a second to digest how her initial sentence must have sounded.
Goulding is spending this NYE with her fans in Dubai as she joins the star-studded line-up at Sandance on Nasimi Beach.
How to Sandance
Sandance takes place on Monday, December 31 from 3pm-3am. Hosted by BBC Radio One's Zane Lowe, the music festival presents a star-studded line up for New Year's Eve, including Ellie Goulding, Rita Ora, Roger Sanchez and Paul Van Dyk complete with fireworks at midnight to ring in 2013.
Tickets, priced Dh295 and Dh500 for VIP, are available at platinumlist.ae and at Nasimi Beach. For VIP table packages call 055 2004321.
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