It all began with a video clip of an unknown young boy whose angelic voice captivated the world. Now a year later that boy is releasing a pop single and will shoot a music video.
So much has changed since the clip of a 10-year-old boy singing These Arms by All For One, which went viral on YouTube. The clip sent top international music makers on a hunt for the unknown singing sensation.
An American record company sent a search party to SA, but it returned empty handed a few days later. Recording giants, including Sony LA and Def Jam, were also keen to find him.
Megastar producer and songwriter Steve Morales, who has worked with Beyoncé, Shakira, Jennifer Lopez and Enrique Iglesias, among others, had also reportedly shown huge interest.
After countless social media postings and stories in the media, he was eventually traced to the Free State in March last year.
But Vicus Visser was no longer that 10-year-old boy. He was 17 and still passionate about singing, with no inkling that recording giants were trying to find him.
When they did track him down, record label executives descended on his home in Heidedal township near Bloemfontein, enticing Vicus with all sorts of offers.
Eventually, Vicus’s mother, Elsie Peters, met Rina Broomberg, a business partner of 5FM breakfast show host Gareth Cliff in a talent management company.
It was agreed that Broomberg’s company, One on One, would manage Vicus.
A protective Peters decided that her son would stay in SA and complete his matric. Vicus moved to Joburg this year, where he is finishing his last year of school while pursuing his musical aspiration under the guidance of Broomberg.
He is staying with his equally talented brother Vincent. He features in Vicus’s debut single, Lovers at first sight, which is due to be released at the end of the week.
Broomberg said a full album was to follow by the end of the year.
She said while they had decided to keep Vicus in SA, the Americans were still interested in him.
“He will go abroad, but for now Vicus wants to start at home. We’re in the process of building him as a brand, and not only a star but a role model as well,” Broomberg said.
Vicus has made headlines, with media coverage likening him to Justin Bieber, the Canadian teenage pop sensation who was also first spotted on YouTube.
For Vicus, the surreal experience has been ‘‘mind-blowing’’.
He is under strict management that entails a strong emphasis on discipline in not only his singing but other aspects of his life.
‘‘I am getting better by the day and learning things like branding, fashion and doing lots of shopping while also learning to be savvy with money,” Vicus said.
He can already see himself as the main attraction on a world stage in a few years’ time.
‘‘It will all happen in good time,’’ Vicus said. “I am in no rush and I’m perfecting everything thanks to my managers, my brother and my mentor Gareth. So watch this space.” - The Star