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Sharon den Adel

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Sharon den Adel
Den Adel at Wacken Open Air 2019
Den Adel at Wacken Open Air 2019
Background information
Birth nameSharon Janny den Adel
Born (1974-07-12) 12 July 1974 (age 50)
Waddinxveen, South Holland, Netherlands
  • Singer
  • songwriter
Years active1996–present
Member of
Partner(s)Robert Westerholt

Sharon Janny den Adel (born 12 July 1974) is a Dutch singer who is the lead vocalist of the symphonic metal band Within Temptation. She has been performing since age 14, and co-founded Within Temptation with partner Robert Westerholt in 1996. She was also elected to be the Dutch chairperson of the jury for the Eurovision Song Contest 2018.[1]

Early life


Sharon Janny den Adel was born on 12 July 1974 in Waddinxveen.[2] She lived in Indonesia for five years as a child. The Balinese dancers that she saw during that time inspired her dance movements on stage.[3] After returning from Suriname to the Netherlands, she was bullied by classmates because of her different clothing style, hairstyle, and darkened skin.[4] From the age of 14, she performed with various bands, including a blues rock band called Kashiro.[5] As their partnership grew, in 1996 they came to form a band called The Portal, though the name was changed to Within Temptation before their debut recording.[2][6] Den Adel has a bachelor's degree in fashion design.[7]



Training and voice


Sharon never formally studied singing and stated in a 2006 interview that she had sung a short while in a choir and was mostly self-taught.[8] She used to practice alone three or four hours per day.[9] She has been described as possessing a mezzo-soprano voice.[10][11][12]

Within Temptation

Den Adel performing with Within Temptation in 2011

Robert Westerholt and den Adel formed Within Temptation (initially called The Portal, though the name was changed before their first recording) in 1996. Westerholt had introduced de Adel to his music when he performed with the band The Circle, which was sonically similar to the music that Within Temptation would make.[13][2] She has defined their work as epic and cinematic.[14] Her vocals play a major role in the band's sound, despite having never received formal vocal training.[13]

Before Within Temptation became famous, she worked for a fashion company, leaving after the band found success with their hit single "Ice Queen". She utilizes her fashion expertise by designing her stage costumes and the band's merchandise.[15] About.com described den Adel as a "versatile and skilled singer who is equally adept at singing powerfully with a full orchestra and choir as she is at singing quietly and emotionally with just a piano."[16] When asked if she prefers to sing in Dutch or English, den Adel said that she favors the latter because "Dutch just doesn't fit to our music style. It is also not the nicest language to sing in. Italian or Spanish would then be better options."[17]

The band were invited several times to compete at the Eurovision Song Contest as the Dutch representatives, but they have declined every time since they find it not the best place for a metal band to present themselves. In 2018, den Adel was then selected as a juror for that year's edition.[1][18]

My Indigo


On 9 November 2017, den Adel announced on the Dutch TV-show RTL Late Night, that on the following day 10 November 2017, the first single for her solo project My Indigo, also entitled "My Indigo", would be released.[19][20] According to den Adel, the project was originally not intended to be released to the general public as it was for her a form to deal with personal problems, and also due to a writer's block for composing for Within Temptation. After two years composing for herself and with regained inspiration to write for Within Temptation, den Adel decided to share the project publicly as a separate project named "My Indigo".[21][22] The self titled first album was released on 20 April 2018.

Collaborations with other artists

Den Adel has collaborated on stage and in studio with artists from different genres, such as Dutch DJ Armin van Buuren (above) and American rock band Evanescence (below).

Besides her main work on Within Temptation, den Adel has performed on-stage and in the studio with several notable artists from varied musical genres, including Tarja Turunen, Armin van Buuren, After Forever, De Heideroosjes, Oomph!, Delain, Agua de Annique, Anneke van Giersbergen and Evanescence. Before forming Within Temptation, den Adel worked together with Voyage, formed by some of the future Within Temptation members, on the track "Frozen" (not to be confused with the Within Temptation song of the same title).

The vocalist took part in several rock and metal opera projects, singing the part of Anna Held in two of Tobias Sammet's Avantasia releases, The Metal Opera and The Metal Opera Part II, later also singing the part of the "Muse" in the 2016 album Ghostlights. She also took the part of the "Indian" on Ayreon's rock opera Into the Electric Castle. Den Adel then collaborated on two of Timo Tolkki's projects, being a guest vocalist on Timo Tolkki's Avalon track "Shine", for the work The Land of New Hope, and was featured in his solo project track "Are You the One?".

Within the symphonic metal scene, den Adel collaborated with After Forever on the track "Beyond Me", released on the album Prison of Desire, performing the song live with the band at selected concerts.[23] She was part of a duet with Marko Hietala on the track "No Compliance" for Delain's album Lucidity, also joining the band on selected live performances of the song.[24] Den Adel was one of the guest vocalists invited for Tarja Turunen's rendition of Feliz Navidad, which featured an ensemble of names from the heavy metal scene and was released as a benefit single.[25]

Within the metal scene, den Adel appeared in rock opera projects such as Tobias Sammet's Avantasia (left) and Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Ayreon (right).

Also venturing on other musical genres, den Adel co-wrote and recorded the vocals for the track "In and Out of Love" on Armin van Buuren's 2008 trance album Imagine, which earned them awards for "Best Progressive House/Trance Track" and "Best video" on the International Dance Music Awards.[26] They performed a special version of the song alongside the Metropole Orchestra at the 2010 edition of the Golden Harp gala ceremony, where van Buuren was awarded for his musical work.[27] At the 2009 edition of the Night of the Proms, den Adel made a guest appearance during John Miles' performance of "Stairway to Heaven".[28] At the end of 2012, den Adel made an appearance on a charity campaign made by a Belgian radio station to raise money for children singing the chorus of the song het Meneer Konijn lied among other Belgian celebrities.[29] The song later topped the Belgian charts.[30] In 2014, den Adel collaborated with Dutch rapper Ali B on the track "Hier".[31]

In 2020, Sharon was asked by American metal band Evanescence to collaborate with them for their single "Use My Voice". Along with lead singer Amy Lee, other musicians joined in on the song such as rock vocalists Lzzy Hale, Taylor Momsen, Deena Jakoub and many more as well as Lindsey Stirling.[32] During the co-headlining Worlds Collide tour, den Adel joined the band on stage to perform the song at selected dates.[33]

Personal life


Den Adel and long-term partner and bandmate Robert Westerholt have three children together. Their first child was born in December 2005.[citation needed] In February 2009, Den Adel announced that she was pregnant with her second child,[34] who was born in June 2009.[35] In November 2010, she announced that she was expecting her third child. The birth of her third son was announced in March 2011.[36] Den Adel and Westerholt eventually married in 2018.



Within Temptation


My Indigo


Guest appearances

Year Title Main or other artist(s) Album
1996 "Frozen" Voyage Embrace
1997 "Hear" Silicon Head Bash
1998 "Isis & Osiris" Ayreon Into the Electric Castle
"Amazing Flight"
"The Decision Tree"
"Tunnel of Light"
"The Garden of Emotions"
"Cosmic Fusion"
"Another Time, Another Space"
1999 "Regular Day in Bosnia" De Heideroosjes Schizo
2000 "Beyond Me" After Forever Prison of Desire
"Farewell" Avantasia The Metal Opera
The Metal Opera: Pt 1 & 2 – Gold Edition[A]
"Behold" Orphanage Inside
"Fly" Paralysis Architecture of the Imagination
"Architecture of the Imagination"
2001 "Last Call to Humanity" De Heideroosjes Fast Forward
2002 "Time" Aemen Fooly Dressed
"Into the Unknown" Avantasia The Metal Opera Part II
The Metal Opera: Pt 1 & 2 – Gold Edition[A]
"Are You the One?" Timo Tolkki Hymn to Life
2005 "Candy" De Heideroosjes [B]
2006 "No Compliance" Delain (also featuring Marko Hietala) Lucidity
2008 "In and Out of Love" Armin van Buuren Imagine
2009 "Somewhere"[C] Agua de Annique Pure Air
"Stupid" Chris Jones
"Stairway to Heaven" John Miles, Katona Twins [D]
2010 "Land Ahead" Oomph! Truth Or Dare
2011 "Keep Breathing" Ruud Jolie For All We Know
2012 "Nostradamus" Coeverduh Wesley Against Society
"Between Two Worlds And I" Leander Rising Heart Tamer
"Het Meneer Konijn Lied" Various artists De Vrienden Van Meneer Konijn
2013 "Shine" Avalon The Land of New Hope
"No Compliance" Delain [E]
"Restless" [E]
2014 "Hier" Ali B Ali B en de Muziekkaravaan
2016 "Isle of Evermore" Avantasia Ghostlights
"Paradise (What About Us?)" (new mix) Tarja Turunen The Brightest Void
2017 "Feliz Navidad" Feliz Navidad
2019 "Sirens" Saint Asonia Flawed Design
2020 "Use My Voice" Evanescence The Bitter Truth
2022 "Faded Out" Asking Alexandria The Retaliators (Music from the Motion Picture) and See What's on the Inside (Deluxe edition)

Other songs

Year Title Album
2018 "Just What I Need Tonight" Liefde Voor Muziek (Live)
"Virgin State Of Mind"
"Things That I Should Have Done"






Year Award Category Nominated Work Result[26][39][40]
2009 International Dance Music Awards Best Progressive House/Trance Track In and Out of Love
(Armin van Buuren feat. Sharon den Adel)
Best video Won
2011 Loudwire Music Awards Rock Goddess of the Year Sharon den Adel Won
2014 Won


  1. ^ a b "Sharon den Adel in vakjury Eurovisie Songfestival". ad.nl. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "Sharon den Adel". Within Temptation. Archived from the original on 4 June 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2012.
  3. ^ "About the dresses from Black Symphony and the 'Sharon dance' Within Temptation (EPISODE #18)". Within Temptation. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 15 August 2019.
  4. ^ "Sharon den Adel speaks out on bullying and discrimination". 4 January 2016. Retrieved 4 January 2016.[dead link]
  5. ^ "My Life Story: Sharon den Adel". Metal Hammer (176): 65. 1 March 2008.
  6. ^ "About WT". Archived from the original on 13 June 2013. Retrieved 9 October 2011.
  7. ^ "Rock". Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  8. ^ Tup (10 July 2006). "Interview with Sharon den Adel". Buzznet. Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. Retrieved 15 December 2012.
  9. ^ Bowar, Chad. "Within Temptation Interview: A Conversation With Vocalist Sharon Den Adel". About.com. Retrieved 15 December 2012.
  10. ^ Hartmann, Graham (25 June 2013). "WITHIN TEMPTATION'S SHARON DEN ADEL – SUPREME ROCK GODDESSES". Loudwire. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
  11. ^ Begrand, Adrien (10 December 2008). "Within Temptation: Black Symphony". PopMatters. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  12. ^ "Happy 38th Birthday Sharon Den Adel – These Are 10 Of Your Best Performances!". Buzznet. 12 July 2012. Retrieved 12 July 2012.
  13. ^ a b "Answers To Your Questions". Roadrunner Records. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  14. ^ "f.y.e. - for your entertainment". fye.com. Archived from the original on 22 August 2007. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  15. ^ "About.com: Sharon den adel interview". Retrieved 9 October 2011.
  16. ^ "Within Temptation - 'An Acoustic Night At The Theatre'". About.com. Archived from the original on 15 September 2011. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  17. ^ "Interview with Sharon Den Adel from Within Temptation". Buzznet. 10 July 2006. Archived from the original on 9 March 2013. Retrieved 26 November 2012.
  18. ^ "Within Temptation : "On fait ce qu'on veut, tant pis si des gens n'aiment pas"". Le Parisien. 12 March 2019. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  19. ^ "DONTTEARMEDOWN - within Temptation International Fan Site".
  20. ^ "Sharon den Adel lanceert soloproject - RTL Nieuws". www.rtlnieuws.nl. Archived from the original on 10 November 2017.
  21. ^ "Within Temptation's Sharon den Adel Reveals My Indigo Solo Song". Loudwire. 12 November 2017.
  22. ^ "Within Temptation-zangeres Sharon den Adel start soloproject". 10 November 2017.
  23. ^ "WITHIN TEMPTATION Singer To Perform With AFTER FOREVER". Blabbermouth.net. 16 May 2006. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  24. ^ "WITHIN TEMPTATION – Interview with Sharon den Adel". Metal and High Heels. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  25. ^ "Tarja Turunen Lines Up All-Star Cast for 'Feliz Navidad' Cover". Loudwire.com. Retrieved 22 December 2017.
  26. ^ a b "31st Annual International Dance Music Awards". Archived from the original on 8 March 2016. Retrieved 6 November 2018.
  27. ^ "Armin van Buuren awarded with Gouden Harp". Armada Music. 4 March 2010. Archived from the original on 8 April 2010. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  28. ^ "Stairway to Heaven – John Miles, Sharon den Adel & Katona Twins". YouTube. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
  29. ^ WTofficial (30 November 2012). "Sharon records song for Meneer Konijn". Within Temptation. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2013.
  30. ^ "De Vrienden Van Meneer Konijn – Het Meneer Konijn lied". ultratop.be. Retrieved 28 October 2013.
  31. ^ "Video: Ali B en de Muziekkaravaan #6 Sharon den Adel" (in Dutch). Puna. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  32. ^ DiVita, Joe (28 August 2020). "Evanescence Debut 'Use My Voice' Music Video". Loudwire. Retrieved 20 December 2020.
  33. ^ "Concert review: Within Temptation & Evanescence differ in delivery but are comparable in excellence". Striffe Magazine. 30 November 2022. Retrieved 27 March 2023.
  34. ^ "A new kid on the block". Archived from the original on 8 June 2009. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  35. ^ "Alive and Kicking!". Archived from the original on 24 July 2009. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  36. ^ "Sharon: Important News". Retrieved 9 October 2011.
  37. ^ "Karo wil goed dood" (in Dutch). 2Doc.nl. 9 February 2023. Retrieved 27 February 2023.
  38. ^ Raatgever, Stefan (9 February 2023). "Karo wilde dood, maar haar omgeving niet belasten met het trauma van een zelfmoord" (in Dutch). Het Parool. Retrieved 27 February 2023.
  39. ^ "Within Temptation's Sharon den Adel Voted Loudwire's 2011 Rock Goddess of the Year". Loudwire. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  40. ^ "Sharon Den Adel Rock Goddess of the Year – 4th Annual Loudwire Music Awards". Loudwire. Retrieved 23 May 2017.