Music student on pacth to stardom
GETTING to work as a backing vocalist for local artists such as Salome, Karen Kortje, Sasha Lee Davids and Robin Peters is quite an achievement for a young vocalist still at music school.
Mario Julie, 20, is in his second year at the Cape Music Institute (CMI), but when he was a youngster he was so shy he refused to let anyone listen to him sing.
However, his talent was gradually unearthed.
“People heard me sing little snippets and would always compliment me and encourage me to try out singing,” Julie recalled.
At Mondale High School, Julie joined the school choir and from there his passion for singing grew.
In Grade 8 he performed for the first time, as part of the choir, in front of the school.
“I realised that sooner or later I would have to perform on my own.
“In Grade 9 I took the opportunity to do my first solo performance during a school assembly.. It was horrible, but I’ve only grown from there.”
That was the first of many of Julie’s performances at school assemblies..
Since he began his tertiary studies, Julie has had many more opportunities to perform.
“We do three annual concerts with CMI, one of which is a cover show. The other two showcases our original material.”
Julie has performed at weddings and open-mic events and provided backing for local stars.
He says his taste in music is “soulful” and John Legend, Jennifer Hudson, Pharrell Williams and Beyoncé are his biggest inspirations.
He is training himself to be a more well-rounded and versatile vocalist because he wants to be able to perform well in any genre. .
“I aspire to become a professional performing and recording artist and I’d like to release my own music in the near future to debut myself as a brand.
“Apart from singing, I love spending time with my friends and family.
“I don’t know if I’d consider it a hobby, but I love writing songs in my free time, for myself and others.”
Mario Julie belts out a song on stage.