Aubrey O'Day (born February 11, 1984) is an American singer, actress,
songwriter, fashion designer, and former member of the girl group
Danity Kane. On the October 7, 2008
episode of Making the Band, Aubrey was declared no longer a member of the
group. Confirmation of O'Day's departure was revealed in the show's live
October 14, 2008 episode.
In addition to O'Day's work with Danity Kane, she has posed for magazines such as Blender and Playboy, as well as starred on Broadway.
Aubrey developed a passion for entertaining at age five, after performing on stage for the first time. "I lived on the stage, and even at six, slept behind the seats of the theatre," she stated in an interview. According to her mother, when Aubrey was six, she was at a performance of The Nutcracker and started to cry. Her mother asked her during intermission what was wrong; Aubrey recalls that moment as the one she "officially" realized her love for entertainment.
Aubrey pursued her love of performing through various leads in musical productions, including Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, Carmen in Fame, Sandy in Grease, Liesl in The Sound of Music, Tzeitel in Fiddler on the Roof, and Mimi in Rent. She also appeared in Annie. O'Day's childhood leaned heavily towards auditions and acting gigs more than school. Biggie and Diddy were her primary influences as a child.
Aubrey attended La Quinta High School in the early 2000s. She later majored in Political science and Drama at the University of California, Irvine, and was a member of the Alpha Chi Omega Sorority.
Aubrey was discovered in 2004 on the MTV reality show Making the Band 3, founded by Sean "Diddy" Combs, and emerged as the show's breakout star. During Season 2 of Making the Band 3 while the competition was still ongoing, Blender Magazine contacted Aubrey to pose for their September 2005 issue. The magazine described her as the contestant "who bared calm resolve and tanned hip bones in beating out almost 10,000 girls for the chance at singing and strutting in a P. Diddy–steered girl group". Aubrey expressed anxiety about competing to be in the group. "I’ve been in the ‘cut’ situation several times," she stated. "It’s hard to stand in a room and know that the dream I want is all in Combs’s hands." Aubrey had dropped out of college in order to participate in the competition. She had been thinking of attending Columbia Law.
After seeing her dance, Combs was convinced that Aubrey had "Black in her family" and further expressed this sentiment after watching her sing a version of "At Last" at a club during Season 1 of the show. This, along with what viewers saw as natural charisma, helped endear her to become a consistent favorite among judges and fans. Former Backstreet Boys and 'N Sync manager Johnny Wright, who served as one of the judges on the show, stated from her first audition in Los Angeles they knew that she was "a star".
"It’s extreme," Aubrey relayed of the competition. "There’s a lot of ‘I love to be in the spotlight’ types—including myself." In response to being told that Combs wanted the type of stars who were stars when they were age 2, Aubrey stated, "Well, I was Aubrey when I was 2. A diva from the beginning."
Aubrey was eventually chosen to be in the group, and was the first member included. The band became known as Danity Kane, and their first album debuted on August 22, 2006, at #1 on the Billboard 200 charts. The group was the opening act for Christina Aguilera on the U.S. leg of her Back to Basics Tour with the Pussycat Dolls.
O'Day's fame and physical features found appealing by magazines helped her broaden her career beyond the group. In addition to other musical projects, she posed for several "sexy" magazine spreads. On August 28, 2008 in an episode of Making the Band, due to being consistently frustrated with O'Day's "oversexed" new image, Combs called Aubrey "one of the worst dancers" in Danity Kane. He told Aubrey that she no longer looked like the girl he signed and that she used to be one of the best. Combs bluntly accused Aubrey of trying to expand her fame at the expense of the entire group, and that she liked flaunting her breasts and wearing big hair — referring to an incident where she had rubbed her cleavage on the arm of a television host. Furious, Combs asked himself on television why he was keeping Aubrey in the group.
On the October 7, 2008 episode of Making the Band, after continued debate with Aubrey about the well-being of the group, Combs declared Aubrey no longer a member of Danity Kane. An official announcement, however, had not been made from Bad Boy Records. When asked by Boston Herald whether she was still in the group, Aubrey was reluctant to answer and stated, "I can’t comment on anything, I’m sorry."
Speculation arose that Combs firing Aubrey was a ratings ploy and that he had no intention of truly dismissing her. When discussing her career, O’Day would still refer to herself as a "member of a girl band" and "the official party girl of Danity Kane". On the October 14, 2008 episode of Making the Band, however, O'Day's departure from the group was confirmed, as well as fellow bandmate and best friend D. Woods. In the live section of the episode, Combs explained that the reason he let Aubrey go was that she was not the same person he signed, that the fame had changed her. When Aubrey came on to reply, she stated: "I would rather be hated every damn day of my life for being real than loved for being something I'm not." In a backstage interview before the finale, Aubrey said:
"Tonight is a representation of the end of a chapter in my life; it's not the end of the book. I will do everything possible to make my mark on this industry, and Danity Kane and Combs provided me with this amazing opportunity to go out and really touch people's hearts. I think the way that we were able to inspire people was something that I will never be able to achieve in that way again in my life."
MTV News gauged fan reactions to the dismissal of Aubrey and Woods. Fans left impassioned, long and detailed comments on the MTV News site about their discontent regarding the group's breakup. The new season of Making the Band was expected to include new members auditioning as "replacements" for Aubrey and Woods in Danity Kane, but will instead show the official end of the group. The complete breakup of the group was originally thought to be the result of Aubrey and Woods, along with group member Shannon Bex, declining the offer to return to the series and the group. This was later argued by O'Day, who stated that while she was unsure if Woods was asked back, she herself was not asked to return. Aubrey said that if offered, she would have returned and is not against returning. She was "officially" released from her Bad Boy Records contract by Combs in the April 16, 2009 episode of Making the Band.
In the April 23, 2009 finale of the show, Aubrey returned with three former members of the group to clear up any misconceptions about the group's breakup. She said that she has forgiven being released from the group, and people who blamed her for the group's demise. Combs said that if he ever puts the group back together, Aubrey and the group's other four members would be returning as Danity Kane.
In 2006, Aubrey ranked #86 on Maxim's Hot 100 list, #81 on Blender's 100 Hottest People list, and posed for the magazines. She walked the catwalk at Heatherette's Fall 2007 runway show at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week held on February 6, and recorded a song with R&B singer Cupid written and produced by D. Harold; Mischke, and T. Thomas, whose title is "Do Yo Dance" and was the new single from Cupid's album Time For A Change. Aubrey was later replaced on the album with Christina Milian.
In January 2008, Aubrey briefly became the face of Famous Stars and Straps, and landed the role as Amber Von Tussle in the Broadway musical Hairspray on July 16, 2008. In addition, she appeared in the comedy American High School costarring Nikki Ziering, which was released in August 2008. Aubrey later made a cameo appearance in Estelle's music video for "Pretty Please" the same month.
Further utilizing her success, Aubrey started her own clothing line called Heart on My Sleeve, which features T-shirts and accessories available only online. She posed topless for men's magazine Complex. The publication stated, "With All Due Respect to the other girls in Danity Kane, it's easy to see why Combs built his group around Aubrey O'Day. Simply put, Aubrey is that chick: the stunner who attracts paparazzi and Broadway producers alike, and the talent least likely to fall into post-reality-show abyss." The magazine also commented on the animosity Aubrey receives from several outlets, such as blog sites, as well as from message board fans, who have come to despise the attention Aubrey attracts from the media and the current image she has crafted of herself.
In late 2008, Aubrey made a guest appearance on the reality show 50 Cent: The Money and the Power. She to be the covergirl for Playboy for the March 2009 issue. Additionally, Aubrey has been featured on the covers of Jadore, Image, Palm Springs Life, King, Right On!, Dub and Envy. She has done features for GQ, In Touch Weekly and Us Weekly.
On the April 23, 2009 finale of Making the Band, Aubrey revealed that she will have her own reality television show. She is also reading scripts for consideration in starring in feature films.
After graduating from high school and deciding to go to college, Aubrey spent a semester at sea where she developed a passion for helping charities. She worked with service organizations while touring in different countries, as well as refugee centers, orphanages, and mostly with children with AIDS. She volunteered as a Big Sister to an organization called Pink Project, and helped victims of the Hurricane Katrina devastation. Motivated by her passion for charity, Aubrey soon created her own organization, called F*A*N (Fighting Aids Now). The charity's goal is to give therapy and art to children in hospitals.
While competing to be in the band, Aubrey formed a strong connection with fellow contestant Aundrea Fimbres. The two made it through two seasons together, gaining a large and loyal fanbase before Combs chose them to be in the group, Aubrey first and Fimbres last. Viewers named the two "the Aus" and "Aubrea" (portmanteux of their first names put together), and the women declared each other best friends forever in the Season 2 finale of the series. O'Day's friendship with Fimbres, however, later became distant.
On The Wendy Williams Show on August 12, 2008, Aubrey stated that she previously dated DJ Cassidy. She refuted rumors of ever having plastic surgery or dating boss Sean Combs. In addition, she declared then-bandmate D. Woods her best friend and porn legend Jenna Jameson one of her good friends.
Aubrey told Complex magazine that she likes to watch porn as a hobby and that her favorite porn star is Jameson. She further relayed that watching videos of African American men having sex with Caucasian women is a fetish of hers. In a radio interview on February 19, 2009 with The Junkies on 106.7 WJFK-FM in Washington D.C., however, she said that her comments about African American/Caucasian porn to Complex "were blown out of proportion" and that she was only describing the most recent porn video that she had watched.
In an August 2008 interview, Aubrey stated she was increasingly irritated with people pigeonholing her sexuality; stating that she looks for "incredible passion and honest love" and not at gender. On December 15, 2008, Fox News reported that Aubrey attended a party accompanied with her girlfriend/lover, according to an anonymous friend in attendance. When questioned by UsMagazine.com regarding the gay rumors, Aubrey did not confirm or deny the speculation about her sexuality, and once again stated that she could not say "one way or another" what her sexual preference is at this point in her life. In 2009, while on the show Chelsea Lately, when asked about being bisexual, she replied, "Generally, I don't like to label myself... I want to find someone I'm passionate about, and I don't want to limit myself to one segment of the population."
During the 2008 presidential election campaign in the United States, Aubrey supported Barack Obama for President. Earlier, before her departure from the group, she got Danity Kane's bar codes from their first two albums tattooed on the back of her neck.
This Aubrey O'Day Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub