"I am a human being and not a number," Ariel Burdett, the 'singer' who gave this iconic statement during the audition of X Factor in 2008, passed away at the age of 38 years. The disclosure of the death of former contestant was made by her friend Reza Bagheri on his Facebook page. The cause of death is not known yet. Burdett, whose real name was Amy, became popular following outrageous audition aired on the show.
The 'infamous audition'
During the auditions of X-Factor, Burdett, who was 26 years old at the time, made a scandalous entry in front of the judges Simon Cowell, Dannii Minogue, Cheryl Tweedy and Louis Walsh.
Ripping off her ID number pasted on the arm, crunching it up and throwing it at the judges, the self-proclaimed 'holistic voice coach' said that she was a human being and not a number. The fans described the act as the most memorable moments of the show.
As soon as her performance ended, Simon Cowell stated that her performance was a nightmare while Ariel defended it by saying that the idea behind it was to make the judges realise that every line was different. To this explanation, Cowell replied that he does not care.
Describing herself as a 'specialist and not a generalist', Ariel who was seen sporting bright blonde dreadlocks and dark black eye makeup, said: "My performance as 'not something to be liked' but rather something 'to be understood from an academic perspective".
Expressing her opinion, Cheryl said: "If I came to you for holistic [coaching] I would be scared of you, you're actually really quite scary. The way you walked over to me I thought we were going to have a scrap". Calling Cheryl 'stupid', Ariel said: "You have never been a rock singer then". She was finally removed from the stage by the security after she used cuss words. It was reported that following the disastrous audition, Ariel changed her name to Arabella Starchild.
Fans and friends mourn the loss
Sharing the news of Burdett's demise on his Facebook page, Reza Bagheri wrote: 'Unfortunately Ara has passed away. If anyone would like information on her funeral, please email email@example.com to speak to her brother'.
As soon as the news of her death broke, condolences messages started pouring on the social media: One tribute read: 'Ariel Burdett is gone. What a loss.'
'I can't believe that she died... rest in peace, Ariel Burdett', posted another fan.
"It is with great sadness that I post this, as I have only just found out myself. A sometime member of the moot, Amy Burdett aka Arabella Starchild passed to the Summerlands earlier this month," wrote another friend on FB.
"RIP Ariel Burdett, the iconic Holistic Vocal Coach who provided one of the most legendary moments on TV," wrote another fan.