We already know that Amanda was not the first choice for being the female vocalist and here are the other options.
The first option was not supported for Serafino because he wanted a famous singer, to make a project interesting but it was supported by Michael. He wanted his ex-girlfriend Corinna Wolke. Kiske commented about it: "He offered me to make a duet album with a famous female vocalist. But I want to sing with my ex-girlfriend if this album finally is done. She can sing very well, and she would give a close feeling. Frontiers ideas are very funny."
The second option for this project, but the first real option, because it is who Serafino wanted, was Simone Simons (Epica), but that option didn't work because the other guys in the band of this singer didn't want her making projects. Kiske explained: "The label wanted someone known from hardrock and metal scene but that woman is in a band and the band didn't want her doing something outside the band, which is understandable. Amanda was one of about three options, I think she was the second choice. But to know who was the first option you should ask Serafino, I forgot who was. I don't know... but I think she was in a Gothic band. But I'm very happy that it ended up with Amanda because we just mesh very nicely. Not only vocally wise but also personally, it was a great atmosphere, we like each other very much and that is like a beautiful kind of closing for this project that we like each other, it could have been worse you know?" Finally a few years later, in November 2013, in the middle of Place Vendôme Thunder In The Distance promotion, Kiske remember the name in an interview by Metal-temple, he said: "It was not originally supposed to be Amanda, though, as I think it was some other lady, Simone, maybe? I do not quite recall..." Journalist: "Simone Simons of Epica?" Kiske continues: "That sounds right. I think the problem was that her band did not want her to do it, though."
Another option on the table was the Norwegian vocalist Issa Oversveen. Michael Eriksen (Circus Maximus) who is related with Frontiers Records label told Issa, that the Italian label was searching a female vocalist for a duet-project so she sent to Frontiers some demos. Issa got a deal with the label but finally was not part of this project. Issa commented: "I knew the band Circus Maximus and Michael loved my voice, he told me Frontiers was searching for a girl to make a duet with Michael Kiske, so I recorded some demos, and Michael told Frontiers to check me out. They got some demos of me and from that they wanted to do a record with me."
So, Mat and Kiske already commented that somebody in Epica didn't want her doin' stuff outside the band but she did a collaboration with Kamelot exactly at the same time, but of course is not the same to sing one song than makin' a whole album... I also think that Serafino when he imagined the 3 options a part of Amanda and Simone he thought in Sharon Den Adel but is just a guess or a wish because I love her XD... after this blog I also have to say that Amanda was the right choice.
Dani (Updated on November 2013)