• Loading

London teenager wins Christian Aid search for gospel talent of the future

Zoe Oputah, a 15-year-old from South Bermondsey in London, has been chosen as the winner of a national gospel talent competition launched by international development agency Christian Aid and Rockhill Music.

The competition, which attracted entries from across the country at regional heats held in Manchester, Bristol, London and Birmingham, saw Zoe beat 35 acts, seven of which reached the final sing off held at the Commonwealth Church, St Marks, Mayfair.

Zoe is a member of the World Evangel Choir in Bermondsey and youth choir RaRe, and has been singing since she was seven and composing her own music since the age of 11.  She sang one of her own songs ‘I Need You Now’ at the Harmonise competition.

Zoe’s prize will be to work with professional musicians, recording at a London studio during the summer for Acoustic Gospel Volume (II).  She will also have the opportunity to perform at selected national events to mark the launch for the album, as well as representing Christian Aid at various live events and festivals throughout 2009.

£1.50 from the sale of every CD will be used to help improve the lives of children in Africa through a variety of Christian Aid funded projects. 

Zoe said:  ‘I entered the competition firstly as a challenge for myself. I knew that I'd probably be the youngest person there with the least experience, but I saw that as a positive thing, a tool I could use to build up on myself as a performer and minister. Also, I joined because I love Gospel! I love being around people who share my passion and who I can gain from as well as share with. I was elated to have won as the standard of the competition was very high. I’m still getting used to the idea actually!’

Acoustic Gospel Volume (II) will be out in November 2008 and will be available from high street retailers including HMV and Wesley Owen and online at www.Acousticgospel.com

Dionne Gravesande of Christian Aid, said:’ We are delighted that Zoe, our youngest finalist, has won the chance to record professionally with Rockhill Music.  Competition was very stiff and she triumphed over many older, more experienced, performers.  The album will not only give Zoe the chance to launch her recording career but will also raise vital funds for Christian Aid’s work with children in developing countries, allowing them to build a better future for themselves.’

Ends

For further press information contact Karen Hedges on +44 (0) 20 7523 2404 email khedges@christian-aid.org.

Notes to editor

Christian Aid is an international development agency working in 50 countries with people of all religions and none.

Rockhill Music was established in 2004 with the sole purpose of managing & promoting music with a positive message – music of all genres which is not only inspiring, but cutting edge.

Rockhill sees this initiative with Christian Aid as an exciting opportunity for talented young people to be given a chance to showcase their abilities and express their music ministry – and also contribute to Christian Aid’s vital work.