Idols winner Paxton Fielies will be featuring as one of the headline acts on Sunday, when the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra holds its Debut Gala Concert.
The concert will be showcasing a host of community talent, offering a chance for local youngsters to shine. The line-up also includes 2017 The Voice SA winner Craig Lucas, Kyle Shepherd, Heavenly Quartez, members of Zip Zap Circus, the Luke de Kock Dance Ensemble, Emilio February, four young violinists from the Cape Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, Talitha Luiters and more.
We caught up with singing sensation Fielies just before she was about to go into rehearsals with the CPO earlier this week.
In the months since she has scooped the title as the 2017 Idols SA winner, the 17-year-old from Bishop Lavis seems to have matured as a self-assured up-and-coming vocalist.
While debates have been shared on Facebook regarding her schooling, she answers simply when asked, "No, I am not in school right now. I do have one more year left. At the moment, my main focus is my career and I have an agent, and I am looking at releasing an album in late March or early April."
Speaking of the songs that made her famous, she says, “Idols definitely raised me and made me grow up a little.
"As I focus on the future, I have to be steadfast and really level-headed. And while I don’t have a specific ‘sound’, what I’d like is to appeal to as wide an audience as possible.”
On the future, Fielies says her primary goal is to make it internationally.
Thus far, she’s travelled to London and performed in Germany with the Cape Town Children’s Choir, and in early April, she'll be jetting off to Sweden to meet its queen. “I am incredibly excited about my upcoming trip and it will be yet another wonderful opportunity,” she said.
Meanwhile, she travels the country performing gigs to receptive audiences in Johannesburg, Kimberley, George and Port Elizabeth.
What is it that makes her so different and appealing?
“I like to think I have a sweet voice but it’s something new and different. I have always looked up to someone like Rihanna, who also started very young and I like the way she works, but I am just going to take it the way it comes with my voice.”
Her message for other aspiring singers is simply, “the future belongs to those who believe in themselves. Take pride and persist.”