Richard has "The Voice SA"
If you are a talent on a music show and still inspire The Parlotones' Kahn Morbee to want to be a better singer, go where most fear by taking a Michael Jackson classic and brilliantly making it your own, and summiting the iTunes SA charts, then you must be remarkable.
Boasting that and more, Richard Stirton (22) from Cape Town blew away the other talent to be named the first ever "The Voice SA" winner on Sunday. This was based on votes from the public after last Sunday's over 1.5million votes, after his stirring rendition of the Simon & Garfukel classic "The Sound of Silence", which went all the way to Number 1 on South African iTunes on the very same night, put him ahead of the rest.
NB: This was after "The Voice SA" broke the internet. Votes made after the Top 2 was announced were discarded after the system crashes, and "M-Net and the producers reverted to the best possible scenario" based on the competition rules.
Richard walks away with a spectacular prize package worth more than R800 000, comprising: R200 000 in cash DialDirect; A brand new Fiat 500; A coveted Gear S2 watch from Samsung, along with a Samsung Galaxy S7 smart phone, a Gear Virtual Reality set, a JS9000 smart TV and Level On Headphones; R100 000 worth of cutting-edge fashion from Truworths; and of course that coveted recording contract with Universal Music South Africa.
To mix it all up, Thembeka, defined as the "best voice" on the show and Zoe who rocked during the show as "the best performer" by Universal music A&R head Kevin Grenfell both got recording contracts with the record label. The head also told journalists after the show that the record company is also weighing up their option on most of the talent, and will make a decision within two to three weeks.
Speaking after the win, who will release his first official release under the record label in two weeks, said he is excited to record ne music to put on the charts. "Much to my mom's dismay, I am gonna do the music, and will get back to school to finish what I started. I don't like to start something and not finish," said the singer who at first didn't want to enter the competition, and "was let go by the Banyard Theathre for my lack of dancing skills".
Kahn, his coach on the show, said he knows it's a cliché to talk about the proverbial X-Factor during talent show. "Richard really has that. He has the ability to tell a story that touches emotions, build it, and show dynamics with his voice in the music." confirmed the coach who has invited the singer to tour with them and record with him as well. "He is one of those artists who are gonna be around forever."
"The Voice SA" has been an amazing platform for the incredible talent on the show and we believe that it will launch plenty of successful music careers, "says M-Net's Head of Publicity, Lani Lombard. "Universal Music has already shown interest in signing some of the other talent as well and more announcements will be made soon.