Former Tauranga pre-school teacher Kylee Tan has hit the world stage in a music video that has been viewed almost 18 million times on video-sharing website YouTube.

Ms Tan left New Zealand in January when she secured a contract with Elite Models in Bangkok, after coming runner-up in Miss Universe New Zealand.

The move meant she had been working and travelling overseas since then.

Ms Tan had been offered a variety of work in Thailand, including catalogue modelling, a part in a television commercial and a starring role in an international music video.

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 Kylee Tan at one of her sessions in Thailand.
Kylee Tan at one of her sessions in Thailand.

She featured in Duke Dumont's I got u music video, which topped the charts in the UK.

The song was No34 on the New Zealand music chart.

The music video had been a major success on YouTube, with almost 18 million views.

"We took a boat out to Phi Phi Island, where we spent the day there filming on the boat and on the beach.

"I couldn't believe that I was getting paid to chill on the beach in Phi Phi Island plus have all expenses paid."

Ms Tan said she had not heard the song before filming started but loved the "very relaxed and upbeat summer anthem".

She said she did not get to meet the England-based artist as the video was made in the perspective of himself as the cameraman, so there was no need for him to go to Thailand.

However, she said she was not expecting the song to be as popular as it was.

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"I feel very blessed and lucky to be a part of the experience as they had quite a few castings looking for the right girl before I got chosen." Ms Tan said she had been having an "epic time" away from home but there were times when she "definitely missed things in the Bay".

"Luckily [with] Skype I was able to keep in contact with my friends and family.

"And Thailand was a great learning experience for me," she said.

"It was my first time living overseas, so I was both excited and nervous about the opportunity that was presented to me."