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Rita Ora Bio
Rita Ora (born November 26, 1990) is a British singer and actress. Her debut studio album, Ora, released in 2012, debuted at number one in the United Kingdom. The album contained the UK number-one singles, “R.I.P.” and “How We Do (Party)“. After reaching the peak position as a featured act on DJ Fresh‘s “Hot Right Now“, Ora became the artist with the most number-one singles on the UK Singles Chart in 2012, with three consecutive singles reaching the top position. She was nominated for three Brit Awards at the 2013 ceremony.
The first single planned from her second album, “I Will Never Let You Down“, became her fourth UK number one when it debuted at the top of the charts in 2014. Also in 2014, Ora featured on Iggy Azalea‘s single, “Black Widow“, which reached number three in the US. In 2015, Ora became a coach on the fourth series of The Voice UK, and later that year, a judge on the twelfth series of The X Factor.
2007–10: Career beginnings
Ora began performing at open mic sessions around London and, occasionally, in her father’s pub. In 2007, Ora had her first music release when she appeared on Craig David‘s track titled “Awkward”, and then again in 2008 on “Where’s Your Love“, featuring Tinchy Stryder, for which she also appeared in the music video. She featured on two songs of James Morrison‘s album, Songs for You, Truths for Me, as backing vocalist.
She auditioned for Eurovision: Your Country Needs You on BBC One to be the British contestant for the Eurovision Song Contest 2009 but later withdrew from the competition after a few episodes as she “decided this challenge wasn’t for her”. Her manager, Sarah Stennett (who also worked with Ellie Goulding, Jessie J and Conor Maynard), later told HitQuarters that Ora had entered the competition because at the time she felt it was her only chance at finding success. Her withdrawal followed her first meeting with her manager when she was reassured that she had genuine potential to make it as a solo artist and that performing in Eurovision would hinder rather than help her chances. Stennett got in touch with Jay Brown of the American label, Roc Nation, and told him about Ora. Brown asked Ora to fly out to New York where she met with Jay Z, the founder of the label. Ora signed with Roc Nation in December 2009, within 48 hours of her arrival to the United States. The same year, she made a cameo on Jay Z‘s video for “Young Forever“. In 2010, Ora made a cameo on “Over” video by Drake. After being signed, Ora recorded an album and wanted to release it, but her label advised against it and she started to work on other material for her debut album.
2011–13: Breakthrough and Ora
Throughout 2011, Ora released covers and videos about working on her debut album on YouTube. The videos caught the attention of DJ Fresh, who at that time was looking for a female vocalist for his song, “Hot Right Now“. Ora featured on the single that was released on 12 February 2012, reaching number one on the UK Singles Chart. During February 2012, Ora was also the opening act on the UK concerts from Drake‘s Club Paradise Tour. Ora worked with Ester Dean, will.i.am, Chase & Status, The-Dream and Stargate on her debut studio album, and took two years to completely finish it.
The first UK single from her debut album, “R.I.P.” (featuring Tinie Tempah), was released on 6 May 2012. Produced by Chase & Status, the song debuted at the top of the UK Singles Chart, becoming her first solo UK number one. On 12 August 2012, “How We Do (Party)” was released and reached number one in the UK and Ireland. It was Ora’s second UK number one as a solo artist, and third overall in 2012.
Whilst supporting Coldplay on their Mylo Xyloto Tour, she later announced that her debut album would be titled Ora. It was released on 27 August 2012 and debuted at the top of the UK Albums Chart. Ora was nominated for Best UK/Ireland Act, Best New Artist, and Push Artist at the 2012 MTV Europe Music Awards. In September 2012, it was announced that Ora will be the opening act on the UK concerts from Usher‘s Euphoria Tour set to start in January 2013. Eventually, the tour was postponed due to Usher’s “professional and personal commitments”. From 23 October through to 30 October 2012, Ora embarked on her first headlining tour, Ora Tour, a five-date US tour supported by MTV.
“Shine Ya Light“, released on 4 November 2012, became Ora’s fourth consecutive top ten single in the UK, peaking at number ten. On 28 November 2012, Ora performed as a special guest at the concert held in Tirana, Albania for the 100th Anniversary of the Independence of Albania. Ora embarked on her twelve-date UK “Radioactive Tour”, from 28 January through to 13 February 2013, to support her debut album. She was nominated for three awards at the 2013 Brit Awards, including the Brit Award for British Breakthrough Act.
2013–present: Upcoming second studio album
On 14 January 2013, Ora revealed that her second album would be clearer and have more direction than the first one. On 26 February 2013, she revealed to Digital Spy that she had been working with Dev Hynes for the second album and that the record shows a different angle to a “party girl”.
On 23 March 2013, Ora performed as a special guest at Le Bal de la Rose du Rocher, an event organised by Karl Lagerfeld in Monte Carlo in aid of the Princess Grace Foundation. On 24 May 2013, Ora was the headline act on 1Xtra Arena/In New Music We Trust stage at Radio 1’s Big Weekend. On 28 June 2013, Ora performed on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury.
On 30 January 2014, she announced the lead single from her second studio album would be called “I Will Never Let You Down“, produced by Calvin Harris. On 18 May 2014, the song debuted at number one on the UK Singles Chart, making it Ora’s fourth overall single to reach the apex of the chart, and third as a solo artist.
Ora featured on Iggy Azalea‘s single titled “Black Widow“, from her album The New Classic. “Black Widow” peaked at number four in the UK, and became Ora’s first top ten song on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at number three. On 14 December, Ora performed at the 2014 telecast of Christmas in Washington, filmed at the National Building Museum. On 22 February 2015, at the 87th Academy Awards, she performed the Academy Award-nominated song “Grateful“, which appears in the film Beyond the Lights.
She released the song “Poison” on 28 June 2015 as the first single from her second studio album. The song debuted at number three on the UK Singles Chart becoming her sixth top five single in the country. A new single featuring Chris Brown titled “Body on Me” was released on 7 August 2015.
An appearance in an episode of the British drama series, The Brief, was her first television role, at the age of 13. Shortly after, she appeared in the British film Spivs (2004). On 14 December 2012, Electronic Arts released a press statement announcing that Ora will be a character in The Sims 3: Seasons video game. In 2013, Ora appeared as a guest star in 90210, as well as appearing as a racer in the film Fast & Furious 6. Ora was featured on Jay Z’s Made in America, a Ron Howard-directed documentary about the Budweiser Made in America Festival, which premiered on 7 September at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. In April 2014, Ora appeared alongside Korean pop star, Hyuna, in an episode of Funny or Die called “Girl, You Better Walk.”
She portrayed Christian Grey’s sister, Mia, in the film adaptation of the best-selling novel Fifty Shades of Grey. Ora originally approached the production hoping to contribute to the film’s soundtrack, and instead was asked to audition for the role of Mia Grey.
In 2010, Ora featured in a commercial for Roc Nation and Skullcandy‘s headphones. She appeared in two Calvin Klein campaigns, in 2010 and 2011. Ora was the face of Italian sneaker brand, Superga, in 2013. In the summer of 2013, she was chosen as the new face of “Material Girl“, a clothing line designed by Madonna. She was the face of two DKNY‘s 2014 collections, Resort collection and Autumn/Winter collection. She’s also the face of the label’s fragrance, DKNY My NY, inspired by New York City. In September 2013, Rimmel announced their collaboration with Ora for a makeup collection. Ora was one of the cast members of Marks & Spencer‘s “Leading Ladies” campaign for Spring/Summer 2014. In 2014, Ora appeared as the face of Roberto Cavalli Autumn/Winter 2014 campaign. In January 2014, Adidas announced a designer collaboration with Ora for their line of casual sports clothing, Adidas Originals. In 2015, she was the face of Coca-Cola and Samsung Galaxy S6 advertising campaigns.
Following the departure of judge Kelly Rowland, Ora was asked to be a guest judge on the ninth series of The X Factor in the UK. She was a judge during the auditions that were filmed at the O2 Arena in London.
In 2015, she was a coach on the fourth series of The Voice UK on BBC One. The same year, it was confirmed that Ora and BBC Radio 1 presenter, Nick Grimshaw, signed as judges for the twelfth series of The X Factor on the rival TV network ITV, after a bidding war between The X Factor and The Voice UK.
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