Credit: BBC

'Such a lucky lady' Jane McDonald shares peek into relationship with ex-husband

Author: Harriet Mallinson

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Jane McDonald often treats her fans to an intriguing insight into her life when she stars on the small screen - and the 1998 BBC show The Cruise that shot her to fame was no exception.

Jane McDonald saw her star ascend after appearing in The Cruise in which cameras documented her life, and those of other crew, onboard the erstwhile Celebrity Cruises ship Galaxy.

The BBC recently re-aired the popular show, catapulting viewers back in time to a much younger Jane.

Already her bubbly personality, easy-going humour and charm with audiences is evident, despite her youth.

Among other subjects, The Cruise looked at Jane's relationship with her then-boyfriend - now ex-husband - Henrik Brixen.

In an early episode, Henrik - whom Jane met while he was a plumber of a cruise ship when she was performing - comes out to meet Jane during a port of call in Mexico over Christmas.

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Not one to hide her emotions, her enthusiasm for her partner is very much on display.

"He's the one I've been talking about all week!" she tells the cameraman. "The love of my life is finally here," she gushes. "I'm extremely happy now that my other half is here, so things are looking good."

The singer shows she doesn't shy away from joking about marriage.

Eyeing a "small box" present, Jane says it won't be what she thinks it could be.

"We said we weren't going to get engaged or anything drastic just yet," she tells the camera as she gets ready in her cabin with Henrik in earshot.

"I think everybody expects that at Christmas... we're a bit more down to earth Henrik and I, a bit more realistic."

- READ MORE: TUI and Marella Cruises launch Christmas and winter holiday 2022 sale -

Jane McDonald: "The love of my life is finally here," she gushes as Henrik arrives. Credit: BBC

The box may not have held an engagement ring but it did glitter with diamond cut gold earrings. "I'm such a lucky lady," Jane exclaims as she thanks Henrik.

The marriage joke resurfaces during the star's vocal performance in the evening.

Jane takes the opportunity to dedicate a song to Henrik and quips "I've got a feeling the wedding's off now!" as the spotlight hones in on Henrik in the audience."

Offstage, the songstress reveals how much she likes having him onboard and how he helps with her performance nerves.

"I'm not looking forward to him leaving; he's calming me down all the time," she admits.

Jane McDonald: The singer later tries scuba diving to please Henrik. Credit: BBC

Displaying her affection for him further, Jane later tries scuba diving despite it not being her activity of choice.

"I think I prefer my sequins... I'm only doing it because [Henrik] likes it," she says.

Later in the show, viewers are treated to a very important moment in Jane's life.

She is seen speaking to Henrik on the phone during a stop at Cozumel and afterwards tells the camera: "Wow, he said 'I love you' on the phone. This is big stuff now, this is really serious."

Indeed the pair did go on to get married in the same year, 1998. However, the union did not last - the pair divorced in 2002.

Jane McDonald: "Wow, he said 'I love you' on the phone," she exclaims. Credit: BBC

It's understood Jane and Henrik did not see eye to eye over children and their rapport "changed" when he became her manager.

Jane wrote in her 2019 autobiography Riding The Waves: My Story: "Henrik and I once talked about having children but there wasn't room for babies in his plans for me. I began to feel lonely in my marriage.

"Your manager is your boss and tells you what to do, what to wear and who to be, so our relationship changed. I loved him with all my heart but felt he'd stopped looking at me as a wife. I became a product.

"Eventually, I came to the devastating conclusion that I really did have nothing left. I told Henrik, 'I'm firing you as my manager.'"

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