TAMBUNAN LASS TAKES HOME PRIZE

Em­pow­ered with the new points sys­tem, An­gel­ica Pau­jin de­feats fan favourite Sai­ful Muham­mad Noor for the ‘Men­tor Milenia’ crown. DEN­NIS CHUA has the story

New Straits Times - - Entertainment -

RE­AL­ITY tal­ent shows of­ten see their win­ners voted for by view­ers’ Short Mes­sag­ing Ser­vice (SMS) votes. While the most tal­ented is ar­guably the most pop­u­lar, this is not al­ways the case.

TV3’s Men­tor Milenia is aware of this, and this year, it re­stricted SMS vot­ing to 30 per cent of each the con­tes­tant’s marks, leav­ing 50 per cent to be de­ter­mined by the show’s no-non­sense judges Datuk Hat­tan and Fauziah Ah­mad Daud, and the rest to a semipro­fes­sional jury.

This re­sulted in Saba­han vo­cal pow­er­house An­gel­ica Pau­jin, 17, nar­rowly de­feat­ing fan favourite Sai­ful Naim Muham­mad Noor, or Usop, in Seri Pen­tas 2, Plaza Alam Sen­tral, Shah Alam, last Sun­day.

One-time Idola Ke­cil 3 semi-fi­nal­ist An­gel­ica from Tambunan, was the pro­tégé of singer-song­writer Akim Ah­mad, while first­time con­tes­tant Usop of Kulim, Kedah, was the pro­tégé of last year’s win­ning men­tor, singer and ac­tor Hazama Azmi.

“I was down with a cold, but Akim told me to per­se­vere. Dur­ing his days in Akademi Fan­ta­sia, he also faced a sim­i­lar predica­ment,” said An­gel­ica, or Elica, af­ter the fi­nal con­cert which was broad­cast live on TV3 at 9pm.

An­gel­ica, Usop and two other fi­nal­ists, Roza­imi “Along” Rosli of Alor Star and Sya­heera Aziz of Jo­hor Baru, were each re­quired to sing a solo num­ber and a duet with an es­tab­lished artiste. An­gel­ica per­formed Nicki As­tria’s Sa­mar Bayan­gan and Cerit­era Cinta made pop­u­lar by Rio Fe­brian and Ja­clyn Vic­tor, with for­mer Men­tor Milenia con­tes­tant Hael Hu­saini Razmi as her duet part­ner.

Hat­tan hailed her as the show’s most im­proved con­tes­tant and said she was ca­pa­ble of per­form­ing chal­leng­ing bal­lads with her pow­er­ful voice. Fauziah also com­mended her for a “job well done”.

Akim said: “An­gel­ica has a strong fight­ing spirit de­spite her soft-spo­ken ways. When­ever she’s on stage, she goes all out to ser­e­nade fans. I’m happy that af­ter 10 weeks of coach­ing, she has be­come a more fo­cused singer.”

Thank­ing her men­tor for push­ing her, An­gel­ica also paid tribute to Akim’s wife, singer Stacy Anam, for guid­ing her.

“Akim and Stacy have been great friends through­out the com­pe­ti­tion. While they pushed me to give my best, I en­joyed my train­ing ses­sions with them be­cause I gained a lot of knowl­edge.”

An­gel­ica and Akim, who marked his first Men­tor Milenia win, bagged the grand prize of RM100,000. She also won the RM10,000 Nef­fos Choice Pro­tégé Award spon­sored by Nef­fos, a Nef­fos X1 Max hand­phone and a hol­i­day to Lon­don, Eng­land.

Usop mes­merised fans with his manly voice, singing Khai Ba­har’s Bayang and Datuk M. Nasir’s Malam, per­formed as a duet with for­mer Men­tor Milenia win­ner Salma Asis.

Hat­tan praised him for his smooth vo­cals and hon­est per­for­mances, while Fauziah said he and Salma told a painful story ef­fec­tively.

“While many ex­pected me to win be­cause of pop­u­lar­ity, Men­tor Milenia also em­pha­sises tal­ent and the judges have the big­gest say. I’m happy, for I’ve given my best and I was for­tu­nate enough to be coached by Hazama,” said Usop, who shared RM50,000 with his men­tor.

“Usop has been a most ‘teach­able’ pro­tégé. He is a quick learner and takes the com­pe­ti­tion se­ri­ously. He may lack singing ex­pe­ri­ence, but he is nat­u­rally tal­ented. I’ll con­tinue to guide him, and I’m con­fi­dent he will be a great singer one day,” said Hazama, who told Usop to al­ways make his songs “lis­ten­able”.

Third-placed Along, 20, shone with his ren­di­tion of the heart­felt Datuk Sudirman song Merisik Khabar. Hat­tan and Fauziah said he nailed it with that per­for­mance.

How­ever, his duet with Siti Nor­diana Mem­ori Berkasih, which she orig­i­nally per­formed with Achik, was crit­i­cised by Fauziah for lack­ing cre­ativ­ity.

In thank­ing his men­tor Tomok, Along said the One In A Mil­lion 3 cham­pion was straight­for­ward in point­ing out his weak­nesses and of­fered good sug­ges­tions on how to im­prove his per­for­mances.

Tomok said Along’s ex­pe­ri­ence in Idola Ke­cil 1 gave him early ex­po­sure to singing con­tests, and helped him reach the fi­nals. Tomok and Along took home RM20,000.

Sya­heera, 19, com­bined tra­di­tional and mod­ern mu­sic in her two per­for­mances. She sang Fran­cissca Peter’s Sekadar Di Ping­gi­ran ac­com­pa­nied by tra­di­tional per­cus­sion­ists, and Dayang Nur­faizah’s Di Pintu Syurga ,a duet with Misha Omar, ac­com­pa­nied by “lagu Asli” mu­si­cians.

Hat­tan praised the cre­ativ­ity of Sya­heera and her men­tor, Black, while Fauziah felt her voice was drowned by the per­cus­sion­ists in the first song.

Black, who shared RM10,000 with his pro­tégé, said: “Sya­heera has been do­ing great, de­spite her lack of singing ex­pe­ri­ence and be­ing ner­vous in the be­gin­ning.”

Thank­ing Black, Sya­heera said: “He en­cour­ages me to en­joy what I’m do­ing and says if I en­joy my work, I will strive hard to ex­cel in it.”

The show, hosted by Issey Fa­zlisham and Mar­sha Lon­doh, saw In­done­sian pop-rock group Nidji, guest per­form.

PIC BY MOHD ASRI SAIFUDDIN MA­MAT

(From left) Sai­ful Naim Muham­mad Noor, An­gel­ica Pau­jin and Roza­imi Rosli with their ‘Men­tor Milenia’ tro­phies in Shah Alam on Sun­day.

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