IT’s fair to say Dionne Hickey won’t forget 2011 in a hurry.
This time last year, our Voice of Fife winner wasn’t even really aware that she could sing!
But now, as well as taking the prestigious title in our spectacular live final back in November, the 17-year-old from Kincardine has just finished a series of appearances as a guest singer at the Hilton Hotel in Glasgow.
And more offers are coming in all the time.
Refreshingly modest, Dionne appears your normal teenager and to a great extent she is.
But, as Voice judge Jackie Storrar pointed out during the final, she has “something special” about her that makes her stand out.
Not that Dionne would say so, she is just delighted that winning our competition has opened doors for her to pursue her dreams.
“I used to sing in my bedroom as everyone does but I didn’t know if I was any good or not,” she said. “Then, about a year ago I got a role in the school music show and afterwards everybody was saying that I was really good and it got me thinking I would like to do more.
“I’ve always loved musical theatre and I landed another part in the school’s production of Summer Holiday, then when I saw the Voice of Fife competition, I thought I would give it a go.”
Dionne was delighted just to make the final and didn’t expect to win.
“When I heard the other finalists I realised the standard was so high and I didn’t really think I had a chance so when they announced my name I think I was in shock and didn’t know what to say.
“Winning gave me a real confidence boost and the comments from the judges especially encouraged me to take my singing seriously.”
Dionne will use part of her £1000 prize money to get singing lessons and studio time to record a couple of demos.
She is also hoping to go to college to study music and performance when she leaves school in the summer.
In the meantime, she has enjoyed her appearances at the Hilton with the Soulkings group, which came about after one of the members saw her in the Voice and asked her to sing a couple of songs.
“I was extremely nervous the first time, singing in front of hundreds of people who are wanting to be entertained, but it was an amazing atmosphere and a great experience.”
Dionne has since been asked to sing at two weddings in 2012 and hopes to line up more performances.
She said: “This has been an incredible year and winning Voice of Fife really topped it all.”