Richard Stirton (22) from Cape Town is the very first winner of M-Net’s proudly South African singing contest, The Voice SA. This also means that Kahn Morbee has come out tops as the winning coach of the season, beating fellow coaches and esteemed musos Karen Zoid, Lira and Bobby van Jaarsveld at the finishing line.
The name of the winner of The Voice SA was announced during a live final from Sasani Studios in Johannesburg, which also included spectacular performances from Vusi Mahlasela and Riana Nel, as well as collaborations between the coaches and the talent in their teams who made it to the Top 8.
Gavin Edwards (37) from Johannesburg, who was hot on Richard’s heels on the iTunes charts this week at no 2, came in second for #TeamBobby, and #TeamLira’s Jeremy Olivier (41) and #TeamKaren’s “Stilfontein”, 25-year-old Almur Marais, rounded out the Top 4 tonight.
Before he entered The Voice South Africa and embarked on his journey to becoming South Africa’s next superstar, Richard was studying towards his B.Com management degree at UCT and playing music in Barnyard shows and at Cape Town’s famous “Stardust” restaurant. All four of the coaches turned for him during the Blind Auditions and he decided to join #TeamKahn because Kahn Morbee said that he had inspired him.
Richard beat James Freedom from Ballito in the Battle Rounds singing James Bay’s “Hold Back The River” and in the first live broadcast on 17 April he performed the old Proclaimers one-hit-wonder, “I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)”, prompting proud Coach Kahn to predict that he would probably end up winning the competition.
When he sang “Don’t You Worry Child” from Swedish House Mafia in the following show, he was saved by the audience’s vote, whereafter Kahn saved him on Top 12 show on Mumford & Sons’s “I Will Wait”.
Last week Richard closed the show with a 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.
Richard walks away with a spectacular prize package worth more than R800 000, comprising:
· A R200 000 cash prize from 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.
During the show, there was also some great news for Zoë Modiga (22) and Thembeka Mnguni (32). They were both offered recording contracts by Universal Music South Africa!
“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.