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The Masked Singer

How The Masked Singer's Ella Hooper kept her time on the show a secret from her Killing Heidi bandmates

It wouldn't have been easy!

By Catie Powers
Last night Killing Heidi songstress Ella Hooper was unmasked on The Masked Singer Australia after a successful run under the Baby mask.
Despite fans being convinced it was her under there all along, only on judge - Dannii Minogue - guessed her identity correctly.
"Some of the clues were pretty good, I thought, at getting people on the right track," Ella told New Idea.
"I think they mentioned me one time, the judges did, even before Dannii locked it in, someone said 'Ella Hooper' and then they took it off the list again. And then they kept me in for a little longer."
After she was unmasked, Ella confessed she came up with some weird excuses to hide the gig from her brother, and fellow Killing Heidi member, Jesse.

Ella told the outlet how she pulled the wool over her sibling's eyes: "I basically just said I was doing a radio course, learning how to do some technical stuff with my radio show.
"I thought that was very plausible, even though I'm not technical at all. If you know me, you're like 'Really? She's the worst person ever with the computer' but maybe that's why I needed the course."
As for who she did tell, the Spicks & Specks alum reveals she only confided in her mum and her boyfriend "so he knew (she) wasn't cheating".
When it came to the remainder of her family and friends, most were just as stumped as Jackie O, Hughesy and Urzila when it came to Baby's identity, with Ella revealing that she didn't get as many inquisitive messages as she thought she would.
"Several friends were watching the show and had no idea it was me which I was really surprised by."
Ella with the rest of Killing Heidi arrive at the 14th Annual ARIA Awards in 2000. (Getty)
But for those who did reach out, she had a standard reply at the ready: "I cannot confirm or deny."
Once Ella popped out of the Baby costume, the 38-year-old says the reaction of her loved ones was so rewarding.
"The phone blew up and they were like 'Ahhh, it's all making sense'. It's almost like the thing that you look forward to the most is the reaction from people who may have been watching and not guessing."
Speaking of not being able to guess, Mahalia Barnes recently told New Idea that she'd heard host Osher Günsberg could suss out celebs by their perfumes.
Ella confirms that it is for this reason there is a "no perfume rule" on set, just in case.
Apart from no spritzing, Ella explains there are other strategies in place to keep things on the down low.
From being kept "completely apart" from the judges except while on stage, where they "cannot say a word", and only having a few rehearsals because of limited time in the suit, it's a very covert operation in the Masked Singer studio.
Limited time in the suit, however, may have been welcome for Ella who confessed post-show that the costume was "heavy", elaborating to New Idea that it was hard to navigate, but ultimately quite the workout.
"I don't want to sound like a sook, but it was very hard. I definitely improved," she said.
"I reckon I actually got fit because of that bloody costume, I was like 'This is killing me, but I can feel my calf muscles growing and getting better'."
And in order to keep their identities hidden, there was rarely a time on set where the celebs weren't in full costume.
"It's pretty much a full-time job from the second you get there; staying in costume, staying away from everyone. It's full on," she said.
"It was very taxing but it's lucky that it's fun because if it wasn't fun, you'd just be exhausted and grumpy."
As for who Ella thinks it's hiding under the remaining masks, she says she has some ideas and "can't wait to see if (she's) right", revealing she could not believe she shared a stage with Macy Gray.
But, like most people, the singer remains stumped by one mask in particular.
Ella enjoyed her time in the Baby costume - even if it was a workout. (Ten)
"Mullet's hard. No one's getting mullet. I don't know who Mullet is and I may not know who Mullet is when they're revealed, I might just not know that person."
At the end of it all, the podcast host deems the experience "crazy and rewarding and fun", acknowledging all the elements that go into making the competition.
"They put so much effort into this show, the costumes, the dancers, the musical direction, the band that records the tracks.
"All of those songs are not just ripped off the internet, they're recorded by a real-life band and a producer who makes them suit your voice and change the key, it's a lot of effort."
This article originally appeared on our sister site, New Idea.

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