"The X Factor" U.K. 2006 winner Leona Lewis has been added to the lineup of performers on NBC's "Christmas in Rockefeller Center," which airs on Dec. 5, 2013 from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. EST/PST. NBC made the announcement on Dec. 2, 2013.
The star-studded holiday special is hosted by “Today” anchors Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker and Natalie Morales, and will also feature performances from Mary J. Blige, Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson, Ashanti, Lauren Alaina, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, Goo Goo Dolls, Ariana Grande, Jewel, Audra McDonald and The Rockettes. Ashanti and Alaina will perform only in the 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. EST hour airing on select NBC stations.
Lewis will also perform on Fox News Channel's "Fox and Friends" on Dec. 5, 2013.
Meanwhile, the music video for Lewis' "One More Sleep" premiered on Dec. 2, 2013.
As previously reported, Lewis was among the artists who performed at the 2013 Regent Street Christmas Lights ceremony, which was held on Nov. 9 in London. The other performers were Jahmene Douglas, Eliza Doolittle, Passenger, Imagination, MKS, Gabrielle, Richard & Adam, Only the Young and former Spice Girls members Emma Bunton and Melanie C, who duetted on the Spice Girls hit "2 Become 1." The announcement was made on Oct. 31, 2013.
Jamie Theakston & Emma Bunton from London's Heart 106.2 headed the star-studded line up leading into the big switch on moment where Regent Street was lit up by the amazing Christmas lights and a spectacular pyrotechnic display to launch Christmas in London’s West End. This year’s Regent Street Christmas lights was switched on by "Modern Family" co-star Ty Burrell and director Rob Minkoff, who were there to promote their animated film "Mr. Peabody and Sherman."
As previously reported, Lewis' first Christmas album — "Christmas, With Love" — is set for release in the U.S. and Canada on Dec. 3, 2013. The album's release in Europe was on Dec. 2, 2013.
"Christmas, With Love" (produced by Richard "Biff" Stannard and Ash Howes) has three new and original songs: "One More Sleep” (written by Stannard, Iain James, Jez Ashurst, Bradford Ellis and Lewis); “Your Hallelujah” (written by Lewis, Jon Levine, Autumn Rowe and Lauren Christy); and “Mr. Right” (written by Stannard, Camille Purcell, Ashurst, Howes and Lewis).
"One More Sleep” is the album's lead single, and its release date in the U.S. and Canada was Nov. 5, 2013. Click here to hear an official teaser of "One More Sleep."
A press release describes "Your Hallelujah" as "hauntingly pretty" and "Mr. Right" as "fun and flirty."
"Christmas, With Love" is Lewis' first album to be released in the U.S. and Canada since 2009's "Echo," which was her second album.
Here is the track listing for "Christmas, With Love":
- One More Sleep
- Winter Wonderland
- White Christmas
- Your Hallelujah
- Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
- Mr. Right
- O Holy Night
- I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday
- Ave Maria
- Silent Night
Although Lewis became the first international breakout star from "The X Factor," her music career has been in a slump recently. "Glassheart," her third studio album of new material, failed to go gold in the U.K., where it was released in 2012. Her first album, 2007's "Spirit" (featuring her biggest hit, "Bleeding Love") went 10 times platinum in the U.K., while her second album, 2009's "Echo" went double-platinum in the U.K.
"Glassheart" sold only about 70,000 copies in the U.K., which was enough for it to reach silver certification, but it is far below the sales that Lewis used to have. "Lovebird," the second single from "Glassheart," flopped in the U.K. and didn't make it onto the Top 100 singles chart.
There are no plans to release "Glassheart" in the United States. Lewis' previous single released in the U.S. was 2011's "Collide," which failed to make it onto the Billboard Hot 100 chart. "Collide" (a collaboration between Lewis and Avicii) was a No. 7 hit in the U.K.
As previously reported, Lewis' "Bleeding Love" and her cover version of Snow Patrol's "Run" are two of the 34 songs featured on the compilation album "The X Factor Greatest Hits," which features hit songs from numerous former "X Factor" U.K. contestants. "The X Factor Greatest Hits" was released in the U.K. and Ireland on Nov. 25, 2013.
In 2013, Lewis parted ways with Modest! Management, which represents several "X Factor" U.K. alumni, including One Direction, JLS, Olly Murs and Little Mix. However, she is still signed to Sony Music, whose record companies include Syco Music, RCA Records, Epic Records and Columbia Records.
As previously reported, Lewis is making her movie debut in the musical/romantic comedy "Holiday," which takes place in the 1980s. The release date for "Holiday" is to be announced, but it is being planned for release in the summer of 2014, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "Holiday" (which was originally titled "Walking on Sunshine") is an independent movie that is being produced by Vertigo Films. "Holiday" is directed by Max Giwa and Dania Pasquini, the duo behind the "StreetDance" franchise.
Details about Lewis' role in "Holiday" are to be announced, but the plot involves a love triangle and a wedding. The movie's cast also includes Greg Wise, Katy Brand, Hannah Arterton, Annabel Scholey and Giulio Berruti. As of now, the movie is being planned for release in the U.K. and Ireland. The movie does not yet have distribution in the U.S.
Songs on the "Holiday" soundtrack include Human League’s "Don’t You Want Me," Madonna’s "Holiday," Cyndi Lauper’s "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" and Wham!’s "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go."
Filming of "Holiday" is taking place in the U.K. and Italy. Lewis tweeted on Sept. 26, 2013, "'Im beyond excited to officially announce that I'm shooting my very first feature film! Its set in Italy and I get to sing in it too : D Just wrapped for the day! So excited for you guys to see this, such great moments being captured. Lucky to work with amazingly talented ppl”