Unathi Nkayi, Somizi Mhlongo-Motaung and Ntokozo Mbambo. Picture: Supplied
Unathi Nkayi, Somizi Mhlongo-Motaung and Ntokozo Mbambo. Picture: Supplied

Unathi Nkayi stunned by 'Idols SA' hopefuls’ voices

By Supplied Time of article published Jul 19, 2021

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Sensational and distinctive sounds made their mark on day two ofIdols SA” auditions on Sunday.

Day two of “Idols SA” season 17 auditions saw 31 hopefuls secure that all-important golden ticket, sending them straight to Theatre Week.

Judges Randall Abrahams, Somizi Mhlongo-Motaung and Unathi Nkayi were joined multi-award-winning gospel star Ntokozo Mbambo, as this week’s guest judge.

The first golden ticket winner was 16-year-old Zukisa from Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal, who felt he had something special to offer the world through song.

After his rendition of Ami Faku’s “Ubuhle Bakho”, Unathi commented: “Your voice is rich, your range is wide, your delivery is sincere, what else should I want?”

An overwhelmed Zukisa garnered enough votes to get a golden ticket with the hope of following in the footsteps of other teen idols like Paxton, Yanga and Zama.

Another stand-out audition of the day that left the judges smiling was that of Mamare, 21, from Polokwane.

Her distinctive voice and looks delighted the judges enough to send her off with a golden ticket on what is set to be an interesting journey, while Lindokuhle Chosi’s love for indigenous instruments and song bowled over Unathi and Somizi.

They are joined by Phelokazi, 24, from East London, Mihlali, 24, from Gqeberha, Keletso, 18, from Polokwane and Nwabisa, 22, also from Gqeberha, whose rendition of Thandiswa Mazwai’s hit song “Nizalwa Ngobani” earned her a spot in Theatre Week.

“As judges, we were pleasantly surprised at the distinctive voices that came through on day two.

“There has always been the belief that we are looking for a certain look and sound for ’Idols SA’, but the voices that shone today prove that the Idols factor is something deeper than that – it is someone who can stand out in the crowd,” says Unathi.

Unfortunately, for some, their auditions did not earn them enough votes to advance to Theatre Week.

The first unsuccessful audition of the day was that of Wandile Jacobs, a 17-year-old social activist from Upington in the Northern Cape.

Wandile, whose movement #DoYourPart mobilises young artists against gender-based violence, found out after trying to impress the judges that his audition was missing the “Idols factor”.

Despite Somizi loving his personality enough to give him a “whooo shem”, his dream of “Idols SA” stardom died a quick death at the hands of the judges and he walked away feeling somewhat less confident. His parting shot: “There is always a next time, but it is not assured.”

Like Wandile, Damon, 21, from Cape Town, was not lucky with his audition, but at least he was given an early taste of how his chosen song should have been performed, with Ntokozo sharing her rendition of his audition song, “Jehovah is Your Name”.

Catch “Idols SA” on Sundays at 5:30 pm on DStv Channel 161.

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