Hackney Council,

Sixteen year old wows the crowd at 'Alter Ego' talent contest


Sixteen-year-old Kali McLoughlin took the Alter Ego talent contest crown after wowing the crowd with her version of Minnie Riperton’s 1974 hit, ‘Loving You’

Nine acts performed in Hackney’s number one talent contest, on Friday 30 January, which was hosted by Kat B (MTV Base) with performances from Jermain Jackman, Sneakbo, Timbo and Mandem on the Wall.

The winner was selected through a 50/50 combination of text votes by the Alter Ego audience and nominations by the judging panel, made up of industry professional Ghetts, Bless Beats and Leroy FX from dance group Flawless, and Hackney Empire’s Susie McKenna.

Hundreds packed out the sell-out event marking the start of Hackney Council’s Discover Young Hackney Festival 2015. This year, Discover Young Hackney has a jam-packed programme of performance, visual and media arts events and activities. Most events take place during February half-term, 15 to 21 February. Highlights include an opportunity to get involved with a performance of Young Sherlock at Shoreditch Town Hall, and Discover the arts in Hackney, a series of events in some of Hackney’s libraries. The Arcola Theatre Takeover offers a chance to become a producer and Hackney Live will once again showcase young talent.

The activities are put together in partnership with Hackney’s vibrant local cultural and arts community, and they offer insights into the creative industries, giving young people more opportunities to prepare for the future. The festival runs until 28 February.

Winner Kali said: “It feels so good, I didn’t even expect it. The process was really fun, it got quite nerve-wracking towards the end, but it’s been a really fun experience from the start.”

Second place went to 18-year-old rapper, Dee Riginal, and in joint-third was singing duo Charla & Begum, both 14, and spoken word artists Jamilah and Kyanne, aged 13 and 14 respectively.

Finalists were selected following an X Factor style contest on 10 January. Performers aged between 13 and 19 took to the stage to deliver a variety of different entertainment including acting, singing, rapping, dance and comedy in the hope of making it through to the finals.

Judge, Leroy FX, said: “I was amazed by the talent and I enjoyed every act that was on, it was a really good night. I thought each artist, really gave it their best. It’s so beneficial to young Hackney people, we need events like this.”

A full programme is available. For live updates and join in the conversation follow @DYHmedia on Twitter or like the DYH Facebook page.

Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council
Every year I’m blown away by the talent on show. Discover Young Hackney is designed to harness that talent and give young people the practical tools and information they need to get on the right career path, through a very exciting programme of events.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, Hackney Council