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BRIGHT STARS: The 15 talented finalists in this year's Next Big Thing contest

BRIGHT STARS: The 15 talented finalists in this year's Next Big Thing contest

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JUST 15 acts have been chosen to perform at the grand final of Junior Achievement’s Next Big Thing 2013 talent contest for 11 to 17-year-olds.

More than 80 acts auditioned!

A fantastic line-up of young talent will therefore be appearing at the event in the Gaiety Theatre next Saturday (February 23) when the winner will take away a £500 cash prize sponsored by the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company.

The runner-up will win a £250 cash prize, sponsored by the Manx Educational Foundation, and third place holders will receive a cash prize of £150, sponsored by Empathy Counselling Service.

Special guest X Factor finalist Jamie Archer, one of the stars at Junior Achievement’s charity concert last November, will be on the judging panel, along with DJ Matt Fletcher from Energy FM and representatives from sponsors Paragon Recruitment and Mannifest.

Junior Achievement’s chief executive Sue Cook: ‘It’s been a tremendous experience and a privilege to witness some truly amazing performers during the auditions for the Next Big Thing.

‘Right from the outset we wanted the Next Big Thing to be a showcase for raw young talent. We’ve got 15 outstanding acts lined up for the final, a show that gives them a rare opportunity to perform live in front of an audience of around 800 people. The show’s not about perfect pitch, or finding the next Pixie Lott, it’s about celebrating young people’s talent and helping them develop confidence, joint aims that are at the very heart of what Junior Achievement is doing in schools across the island.’

The show starts at 7.30pm. Tickets for the show - which includes a performance by last year’s winners Asteria plus a surprise guest appearance – start at £6 and are available on 600555.

The 15 finalists, pictured right, are Coral Amphlett, Matthew Atherton, BallBoom, Mae Challis, Alice Dudley, E-flat, Fire and Ice, Fourth Dimension, Isaac Jagus, Otto, Jack Parker, Alice Quayle, Alexandra Slater, Strictly Girls and Violet.

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