Former Pop Idol contestant and theater star Darius Campbell Danesh died at the age of 41.
Danesh was found unresponsive in his apartment in Rochester, Minnesota on Aug. 11 and was later pronounced dead by the local medical examiner’s office, his family announced in a statement.
“The local police department have confirmed that there were no signs of intent or suspicious circumstances. The cause of his sudden death is unknown at this stage while medical examinations continue,” the statement further said.
Danesh first rose to prominence when he appeared on the ITV talent show Popstars in 2001 with a theatrical rendition of Britney Spears’ Baby One More Time.
A year later, Danesh came third behind Will Young and Gareth Gates on the first series of Pop Idol.
Danesh’s debut single “Colorblind” came out in July 2002 and reached number one in the United Kingdom. His album, “Dive In,” reached the top 10.
Danesh later forged a successful stage career, appearing in West End shows such as “Chicago,” “Guys and Dolls,” “Gone With the Wind,” and “Funny Girl.”
In 2010, Danesh won an ITV competition called, “Popstar to Opera Star,” in which pop singers train to perform world-famous opera arias.
A few months after winning, Danesh landed his first major opera role in the production of Carmen at London’s O2 Arena.
Danesh also worked in Hollywood as a co-executive producer on 2016 the crime thriller, “Imperium,” starring Daniel Radcliffe.
Simon Cowell, who was a judge on Pop Idol, described Danesh as “charismatic, funny, and just a great person to be with.”
“His passing, for someone so young, is an absolute tragedy and my heart goes out to his family and friends,” Cowell said.
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