Angie Bowie, the first wife of David Bowie, was unaware Monday that the legendary rock star had died, according to British news reports, because she has been competing on the reality show Celebrity Big Brother, which forbids contact with the outside world while filming.
The show’s producers told the press that Angie, 66, an American former model, would be told as soon as possible.
“Following the very sad news of David Bowie’s death this morning, we can confirm that Angie Bowie will be informed off camera today at the earliest opportunity,” Channel 5, the network that airs the show in the U.K., said in a statement, the Guardian reported. “We will update further once this has taken place.”
David Bowie, 69, died Sunday after an 18-month battle with cancer.
Angie went into the Big Brother house last Tuesday, the Guardian reported. On a recent episode of the show, she described her acrimonious split from the rocker in 1980, after 10 years of marriage.
“I go to great lengths to avoid him … It was terrible when we broke up, it was awful,” Angie said, adding that the two hadn’t seen each other since shortly after their breakup.
David and Angie had one child together, Duncan Jones, born in 1971, known as “Zowie” as a child. David was awarded custody of Jones after the divorce. In a 2010 interview, Angie told the Guardian she hadn’t heard from her son in years and thought reconciliation was “unlikely.”
Jones, now a film director, posted a short note Monday on Twitter about his father’s death.
“Very sorry and sad to say it’s true,” he wrote. “I’ll be offline for a while. Love to all.”