Popstar to Operastar hopefuls Joe Washbourn and Andy Bell can't stop smoking!

Joe Washbourn

There are plenty of reasons to stop smoking and taking part in a reality show where you need to sing opera is just one of them (albeit rather rare). Popstar to Operastar contestants Joe Washbourn and Andy Bell however can't seem to give up the habit - popping out for "sneaky fag breaks".

The Sun claims the du have been popping out for cigarettes between singing lessons for the show, which has annoyed mentors including Katherine Jenkins.

Joe said: "I get on well with Andy Bell. We go out having the odd cheeky cigarette behind the judges' backs. The judges haven't seen us yet. We've been hiding. We're the only smokers on the show."

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But he added: "Because you're trying to sing such a pure note you really can't hide it.

"If I've got a slightly sore throat I can do a performance in my day job because my voice is quite gravelly anyway. With opera you can't do that. There are so many rules and there is so much discipline you can't get away with cutting corners like you can in pop and rock.

"There's a right way to do it and a wrong way to do it. But there's no in-between."

Joe and Andy will both perform for the first time tomorrow, competing against Claire Richards and Jocelyn Brown in the second live show.

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