A pas­sion for the young

South Waikato News - - ENTERTAINMENT -

Award-win­ning coun­try mu­sic singer Va­lerie Joyce’s dream has come true in more ways than one.

Joyce picked up a bunch of awards at the Waikato Coun­try Mu­sic Awards re­cently.

The singer won the gospel, west­ern, fe­male open and over­all veteran cat­e­gories at the com­pe­ti­tion, en­abling the crooner au­to­matic en­try into the pres­ti­gious En­ter­tainer of the Year Awards later this year.

How­ever, her vic­to­ries are not what keeps the pas­sion ig­nited for this songstress.

‘‘My pas­sion lies with the young peo­ple in this coun­try. Coun­try mu­sic clubs are a great out­let for the young to sing, learn mu­si­cal in­stru­ments, stage pres­ence, dic­tion and most im­por­tantly self es­teem.’’ Joyce said.

The singer be­lieves coun­try mu­sic clubs, of which there are many through­out the coun­try, are an av­enue for youth to flour­ish.

‘‘So many of our young ones are get­ting into trou­ble and have nowhere to go. They think coun­try mu­sic, ‘oh yuck’ but the re­al­ity is, that the clubs cel­e­brate a va­ri­ety of mu­sic. Th­ese clubs are great for our young peo­ple to learn to be con­fi­dent and show­case their tal­ent with a group of sup­port­ive mem­bers and pick up valu­able tips to im­prove their per­for­mance. We have so much tal­ent in this town, we have the best gui­tarist in New Zealand, Wil­lie Bar­rett play­ing for a lo­cal club here and the youth are brim­ming with so much mu­si­cal tal­ent and think they have no out­let, well, that is ex­actly why our coun­try mu­sic clubs are here for.’’

Joyce cred­its her hus­band, John Sim­cock, for un­yield­ing sup­port.

‘‘He is my big­gest fan and my great­est critic. He has helped me im­prove my per­for­mance and is also an amaz­ing singer as well.

‘‘When I was young sit­ting by my mother’s knees lis­ten­ing to her sing, I dreamed that one day I would use the gift I have to help peo­ple, that has al­ways been a dream of mine and I have been asked to per­form at a char­ity con­cert in Waihi. I am liv­ing my dream and I don’t know any­one that can say that.’’

For now, as Va­lerie pre­pares for the En­ter­tainer of the Year Awards she hopes to see more young peo­ple at lo­cal coun­try mu­sic club days.

‘‘It’s a great at­mos­phere to en­joy and par­tic­i­pate in top qual­ity per­for­mances.’’

LIV­ING THE DREAM: Award-win­ning coun­try mu­sic singer Va­lerie Joyce is liv­ing the dream.

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