London, April 3 (IANS) Singer-performer Alesha Dixon, former judge on reality show “Strictly Come Dancing”, says prejudice prevails in showbiz as she was once told that a magazine won’t sell if a “black woman” was on the cover.
“Sadly, I’ve learnt that prejudice still exists in parts of the entertainment industry. I did an interview with a magazine once and the journalist quite openly said they wouldn’t put a black person on the front cover because the magazine wouldn’t sell,” Dixon told Cosmopolitan, reports thesun.co.uk.
“It made me angry because it shouldn’t be about the colour of the person’s skin, it should be about the person,” added the singer, born to a British mother and a Jamaican father.
The rapper, upset about the fact that black women are still a minority on TV today, added: “There still aren’t many black women on primetime TV. Times are changing, but it’s interesting we’re in 2013 and still experiencing firsts.
“Hopefully, in the next 100 years things will balance even more. Britain is an amazing multicultural place to live in, and that should be celebrated and represented.”
However, Dixon admits she never had a problem when she joined the judges’ panel of “Strictly Come Dancing”.
“When I joined the ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ panel in 2009, the controller of the BBC came into my dressing room and said they were proud to have a woman of colour on their panel. It was so nice that they acknowledged it.”
The 30-year-old admits she was aware of the prejudice since she was young.
“There were very few British black women on TV or in music when I was a teenager; when you’re growing up you need someone you can identify with. I remember at Christmas being bought a doll that didn’t look anything like me so I threw it away.
“When I saw Neneh Cherry singing on TV, I was so glad that there was someone of the same ethnicity – and with the same curly hair – for me to look up to,” she added.
But she is now more comfortable in her “own skin”.
“Since I turned 30, I’ve never felt better in my own skin. I feel positive about getting older. I don’t worry about the future because that will take care of itself. I don’t carry around past baggage because what’s that going to do for me?
“We only have now. The fact that I’m still working in the industry now, ten years on, is something I’m so thankful for. There is no door you can’t open,” she said.