Schoolgirl to sing her heart out on TV show The Voice Kids

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A talented schoolgirl, who lost her mum to breast cancer, will star on new television show The Voice Kids UK.

Erin Connell, from Normanton, beat 15,000 hopefuls to secure the chance to sing to the programme’s three celebrity judges - Pixie Lott, Will.I.Am and Danny Jones from McFly.

And viewers will find out next week whether her vocals were enough to gain their support.

Proud dad Richard said the 13-year-old was already a winner in his mind.

“Apparently, there were 15,000 young people who applied and she was selected as one of the 70 who made it on to the show,” he said.

Erin, a student at Freeston Academy, will be shown singing her heart out in the programme’s third episode, to be screened at 7.30pm on Saturday, June 24.

Those tuning in will see her perform a rendition of On My Own, from West End hit musical Les Miserables.

The popstar judges, sat with their backs to her in swivel chairs, will be able to hit their button to turn around and see her if they like what they hear.

And a swivel from any of them will mean she will pass through to the next stage of the singing competition.

Mr Connell said: “People will have to tune in and see what happens. It was very tense and a great experience.”

Erin’s mum Peta was diagnosed with breast cancer when the youngster was just four and passed away four years later.

Mr Connell said: “She spent a great deal of that time in hospital, so Erin and I did everything together, to keep ourselves busy. We are very close.

“Peta would have been very proud. We keep her memory alive but we don’t dwell on it. You have to move on.”

Erin, who moved to Normanton from Ripon at Easter, said it would be “weird” to see herself on the show, which launched on June 10.

“I enjoyed the experience but I’m not used to all the stage things,” she said. “When I was on the stage it gave me adrenaline.

“The celebrities on the show were really nice. I felt comfortable around them and they were easy to talk to.””

Mr Connell said his daughter, who was born in Hexham in the North East, “loved to sing from the moment she could talk”.

Despite never taking a singing lesson, and being unable to read music, she has won school talent shows, theatre singing competitions, and regional championships.

The Freeston Academy principal Mike Tarr said: “We’ve known since Erin joined us she is a special talent.

“She’s a great all rounder, also being good at sport as well as the academic side.

“We will do what we can to support her aspirations, as we do for all our students.

“We’re very excited for her and looking forward to watching her on what is a top television show.”

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