Emeli Sande takes best British female gong at Brits 2013


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The Independent Culture

Chart-topping star Emeli Sande has been named best British female solo artist at the Brit Awards.

Emeli Sande was little more than a hotly-tipped hope for the future as she collected her Critics' Choice prize at last year's Brits.

But in the past year she has become one of the biggest stars in music and seen around the world thanks to her starring roles in the London 2012 Olympics opening and closing ceremonies.

Her performances helped her already healthy sales to soar further to the extent that her debut Our Version Of Events was the UK's biggest-selling album of 2012.

It has been a busy year for the star, as she also found the time to marry boyfriend Adam Gouragine in New York towards the end of the summer as well as touring alongside Coldplay.

Sande, 25, was born in Sunderland to English and Zambian parents, but was raised near Aberdeen.

She attended Glasgow University's medical school for four years before signing a music publishing deal in 2010.

Her songwriting prowess saw her working on tracks by Cheryl Cole, Leona Lewis and Tinie Tempah before finding success in her own right.

Sande has credited her father Joel - who ran the school choir - for igniting her passion for music.

She has told how he was "naturally musical" and "the sort of person that could pick up an instrument and play it".

Explaining her decision to drop out of her medicine degree, she said in an interview: "Knowing he was behind me was really important to me. I hope I never let him down."

As the Critics' Choice winner at the Brits, she followed in the footsteps of such acts as Adele, Florence + The Machine and Jessie J, who have similarly gone on to huge sales.

Our Version Of Events clocked up 1.39 million sales in the UK last year.