New Yellow Wiggle Tsehay Hawkins, 16, reveals how her friends reacted to her casting

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Emma Watkins shocked fans in October when she announced she was leaving The Wiggles after 11 years.

And her replacement, talented high school student and champion dancer Tsehay Hawkins, 16, revealed to The Daily Telegraph on Saturday how her friends reacted to her casting.

‘When I joined, my (teenage) friends were all like, “that’s so cool, The Wiggles are sick!”‘ she told the publication.

Set to become a household name: New Yellow Wiggle Tsehay Hawkins, 16, revealed to The Daily Telegraph on Saturday how her friends reacted to her casting - after Emma Watkins announced she was leaving the band. Tsehay is pictured in November

Set to become a household name: New Yellow Wiggle Tsehay Hawkins, 16, revealed to The Daily Telegraph on Saturday how her friends reacted to her casting – after Emma Watkins announced she was leaving the band. Tsehay is pictured in November 

Tsehay continued: ‘And they were all having Hottest 100 parties, sending me videos of them dancing around to it and (screaming), “we love The Wiggles, they rock!”‘  

The Wiggles topped Triple J’s annual Hottest 100 list for 2021 with their cover of Tame Impala’s psychedelic 2012 hit, Elephant. 

The popular children’s band has been around for an incredible 30 years, and is now made up of three brands.

Fans of the band:'When I joined, my (teenage) friends were all like, "that's so cool, The Wiggles are sick!"' the talented high school student and champion dancer told the publication

Fans of the band: ‘When I joined, my (teenage) friends were all like, “that’s so cool, The Wiggles are sick!”‘ the talented high school student and champion dancer told the publication

Founding members Anthony Field, Murray Cook, Jeff Fatt and Greg Page make up the OG’s, while the current line-up includes Anthony, Lachy Gillespie, Simon Pryce and Tsehay.  

There is also the Fruit Salad TV Wiggles – a group promoting diversity and inclusivity that star on YouTube and at concerts – made up of Evie Ferris, John Pearce and Kenny Hamilton. 

Tsehay first joined The Wiggles family for their Fruit Salad TV series in August last year, wearing a red skivvy. 

Shock exit: Emma (pictured), 32, shocked fans in October when she announced she was leaving The Wiggles after 11 years

Shock exit: Emma (pictured), 32, shocked fans in October when she announced she was leaving The Wiggles after 11 years

The Ethiopian-born star is a champion dancer and in 2020 won four Latin dance titles at the World Latin Dance Cup.

Tsehay boasts over 26,000 Instagram followers and shares dance videos with her fans.

The teen was adopted by Australian couple Robyn and Reg Hawkins at the age of seven months. 

The family are from Bargo, NSW, and she also has an adopted brother named Kendly, 10, who is from Colombia. 

Talented: Ethiopian-born Tsehay is a champion dancer and in 2020 won four Latin dance titles at the World Latin Dance Cup. Tsehay boasts over 26,000 Instagram followers and shares dance videos with her fans

Talented: Ethiopian-born Tsehay is a champion dancer and in 2020 won four Latin dance titles at the World Latin Dance Cup. Tsehay boasts over 26,000 Instagram followers and shares dance videos with her fans

Back in 2016, ahead of one of her dance competitions, her adoptive mother Robyn said the family love watching Tsehay connect with her Ethiopian heritage.   

‘When I see her doing Ethiopian dancing, it brings me to tears and seeing the reactions of the crowd is phenomenal,’ Robyn said at the time. 

She added: ‘It’s great that she expresses her heritage like she does and I’m so proud of her.’

In October, Tsehay said she is thrilled to wear the yellow skivvy as an official new member of the band. 

Exciting times: Tsehay is thrilled to wear the yellow skivvy as an official new member of the band, saying in a statement in October:'Dancing has always been my passion, and I look forward to being able to share the joy of song and dance with children all over the world!'

Exciting times: Tsehay is thrilled to wear the yellow skivvy as an official new member of the band, saying in a statement in October: ‘Dancing has always been my passion, and I look forward to being able to share the joy of song and dance with children all over the world!’

‘Dancing has always been my passion, and I look forward to being able to share the joy of song and dance with children all over the world!’ she said in an Instagram statement. 

‘I grew up watching The Wiggles and I’ve already loved working with Anthony, Emma, Simon, Lachy, Evie, Kelly, John and all the Wiggly characters filming their latest TV series Fruit Salad TV.

‘I’m now incredibly excited and honoured to be joining them now in the yellow skivvy and to have the chance to go out on the road in the new arena tour, I can’t wait to meet all the Wiggly fans.’

She also paid tribute to Emma, saying: ‘Thank you Emma for leading the way!’ 

Her story: Tsehay was adopted by Robyn and Reg Hawkins at the age of seven months. The family are from Bargo, NSW, and she also has an adopted brother named Kendly, 10, who is from Colombia

Her story: Tsehay was adopted by Robyn and Reg Hawkins at the age of seven months. The family are from Bargo, NSW, and she also has an adopted brother named Kendly, 10, who is from Colombia

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