Performer Darius Campbell-Danesh, who rose to prominence in London's West End alongside a successful career as a pop musician, died August 11. The news was confirmed by his family through the BBC. He was 41.
Born August 19, 1980, Mr. Campbell-Danesh first rose to prominence after appearing on the British talent competition Popstars, which was soon followed by the talent competition Pop Idol. He released several successful pop records throughout the early 2000s, including albums Dive In and Live Twice, and his first single, "Colourblind," topped the UK singles charts.
On stage, Mr. Campbell-Danesh was a frequent sight as Billy Flynn in Chicago, playing the role twice in the West End, becoming the youngest Billy Flynn in the history of the production at the age of 25.
Also in London, he played Sky Masterson in Guys and Dolls, replacing the revival's original star Ewan McGregor, and originated the role of Rhett Butler in Trevor Nunn's stage adaptation of Gone With the Wind. He trained operatically, winning the talent show Popstar to Operastar, appearing in the opera Carmen at the O2 Arena. In 2013, he led the company of From Here to Eternity the Musical, and in 2015, he played Nicky Arnstein opposite Sheridan Smith in Michael Mayer's revival of Funny Girl.
Mr. Campbell-Danesh's family released the following statement alongside news of his death.
"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 11 August 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."