Former Pop Idol star Darius Campbell Danesh has died
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Former Pop Idol contestant and Darius Campbell Danesh has died at the age of 41, his family has confirmed.
The star's family said he was found dead in his apartment room in Rochester, Minnesota, on Thursday 11 August.
The cause of death remains unknown, but police have confirmed there were no signs of 'intent or suspicious circumstances'.
A statement from the family said: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Darius Campbell Danesh. Darius was found unresponsive in bed in his apartment room in Rochester, Minnesota, on August 11 and was pronounced dead in the afternoon by the local medical examiners’ office.
“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.
“We ask that you kindly respect our wishes for privacy at this time whilst we come to terms with the tragic loss of our son and brother.”
The Scottish singer-songwriter and actor was known as Darius Danesh when he made his first bid for fame in ITV show Popstars in 2001.
He also came third in 2002's instalment of Pop Idol, behind winner Will Young and runner-up Gareth Gates, and went on to release two studio albums, 2002's Dive In and its 2004 follow-up Live Twice.
But he also forged a successful career in the West End, having appeared in musicals including Chicago and the Olivier Award-winning Guys and Dolls.
In 2011, speaking about reprising the role of Chicago lawyer Billy Flynn, Campbell Danesh said he had based his portrayal of the character on his old mentor and Pop Idol judge Simon Cowell.
He said: “He’s the consummate businessman and a wonderful guy and there’s a lot of Simon Cowell in Billy Flynn in terms of the way he approaches things and I recognise that in terms of the character.”
He also credited music mogul Cowell with persuading him to take on the role in the first place, adding: “I’m incredibly grateful for the experiences I’ve had and all the opportunities that it opened up and to be able to call Simon Cowell a friend and to be able to have dinner with him.”
Campbell Danesh lived in the US, and was previously married to actor Natasha Henstridge, having been wed in 2011 before divorcing a few years later.
Topics: Music, TV And Film, Celebrity