Sharon den Adel

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Sharon den Adel
Sharon Den Adel.jpg
Sharon den Adel on backstage at the 2016 Hellfest in Clisson, France.
Behind her on the right, Jeroen van Veen.
Background information
Birth nameSharon Janny den Adel
Also known asSharon den Adel
Born (1974-07-12) 12 July 1974 (age 44)
OriginWaddinxveen, Netherlands
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • fashion designer
Years active1996–present
Associated acts

Sharon Janny den Adel (born 12 July 1974) is a Dutch singer, songwriter and fashion designer, best known as the lead vocalist and one of the main songwriters in the Dutch symphonic metal band Within Temptation. She has been a performing musician since the age of 14, and is a founding member of Within Temptation, along with Robert Westerholt, in 1996. She was also elected to be the Dutch representative of the jury for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest[1]

Personal life[edit]

Sharon Janny den Adel was born on 12 July 1974 in Waddinxveen, Netherlands. She traveled extensively in her youth,[2] living in at least ten different countries, including Indonesia, where she lived between ages one and six.[3] From the age of 14, she performed with various bands, including a blues rock band called Kashiro.[4] During high school Den Adel met Robert Westerholt who introduced her to Paradise Lost.[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] She has a bachelor's degree in fashion design.[5]

Den Adel and long-term partner Robert Westerholt have three children together (daughter Eva Luna, sons Robin Aiden and Logan Arwin),[3] and they currently live near Hilversum. Den Adel was pregnant with their first child, Eva Luna (born 7 December 2005), during The Silent Force tour. On 22 February 2009, Den Adel announced that she was pregnant with her second child,[7] Robin Aiden Westerholt, whose birth was announced on the band's official website on 1 June 2009. Going by the name of Aiden, he was born prematurely at 32 weeks and 6 days.[8] On 26 November 2010, Den Adel announced that she was expecting another child which, due to complications with her previous pregnancies, meant that the band's 2011 tour dates would be rescheduled from spring until autumn. The birth of her son, Logan Arwin, was announced on 31 March 2011.[9]


Training and vocal profile[edit]

Den Adel 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.[10] She used to practice alone three or four hours per day.[11] Sharon has a mezzo-soprano range, though she has a light and lyric vocal quality for that range. Her highest note is found on the song "Jane Doe" Netherlands/Australia/Japan release and her lowest on "Empty Eyes".[citation needed] On Stand My Ground, one of Within Temptation signature songs, Den Adel vocal range spans from C4 to A5.[12]

Within Temptation[edit]

Sharon den Adel performing with Within Temptation in 2011

Together with her partner, Robert Westerholt, Den Adel formed Within Temptation (initially called The Portal, though the name was changed before their first recording)[2] in 1996. She has defined their work as epic and cinematic.[13] Her vocals play a major role in the band's sound, despite having never received formal vocal training.[14]

Before Within Temptation became famous, she worked for a fashion company, leaving after the band found success with their hit single "Ice Queen". She utilises her fashion expertise by designing her stage costumes and the band's merchandise.[15] 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 favours 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]

My Indigo[edit]

On November 9, 2017, Den Adel announced on the Dutch TV-show RTL Late Night, that on the following day November 10, 2017, the first single for her solo project My Indigo, also entitled "My Indigo", will be released.[18][19] 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”.[20][21] The self titled first album was released on April 20th, 2018.

Collaborations with other artists[edit]

Sharon den Adel has performed on-stage and in the studio with several notable artists, including Tarja Turunen, Armin van Buuren, After Forever, De Heideroosjes, Oomph!, Delain, Agua de Annique and Anneke van Giersbergen. She sang the part of Anna Held in Tobias Sammet's Avantasia projects, and the part of the Indian on Ayreon's rock opera Into the Electric Castle. She sang the vocals of one Timo Tolkki song, "Are You The One?", co-wrote and recorded the vocals for the track "In And Out Of Love" on Armin van Buuren's 2008 Trance album Imagine, and sang on the track "No Compliance" for Delain's album Lucidity, as well as working with the band Voyage on the track "Frozen" (not to be confused with the Within Temptation song of the same title). At the 2009 edition of the Night of the Proms festival, Den Adel made a guest appearance during John Miles' performance of "Stairway to Heaven".[22] At the end of 2012, Sharon 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[23] The song also peaked #1 at the Belgium Charts.[24] Her cover of the song "Just What I Need for Tonight", from The Dinky Toys during the TV program Liefde voor muziek, peaked #18 on the Ultratip Belgium Charts.[25]


Within Temptation[edit]

My Indigo[edit]

Guest appearances[edit]

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 N/A[B]
2006 "No Compliance" Delain (also featuring Marco Hietala) Lucidity
2008 "In and Out of Love" Armin van Buuren Imagine
2009 "Somewhere"[C] Agua de Annique Pure Air
"Stairway to Heaven" John Miles, Katona Twins Night of the Proms[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 Metal Female Voices Fest 2013[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 "Escape"[F] Avi8
"Feliz Navidad" Tarja Turunen Feliz Navidad

Other Songs[edit]

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