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Vincy lass nabs int’l singing contract

Vincy lass nabs int’l singing contract

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Vincentians flocked to the E.T. Joshua Airport Sunday to catch a glimpse and to cheer on their latest hero. Kiokya Cruickshank, fresh from winning the Digicel Rising Star competition, alighted from her flight out of Barbados at just after 2.00 p.m.

Met in the VIP lounge by her parents, Carol and Cid who hugged and kissed their first born. Mom Carol wished her daughter success in all her dreams and thanked everyone for supporting Kiokya, noting that not only Vincentians but also St.Lucians, Barbadians and Grenadians supported her. She also wished that Kiokya would stay focused and stick to the beliefs and teachings she was raised with. Carol further noted that her daughter always wanted to be a star and it happened at an unexpected time in her life. {{more}}

Kiokya’s dad Cid indicated that he felt proud of his daughter and was overwhelmed to see Vincentians support her, he also wished the next winner of the Digicel Rising Star competition all the best.

Uncle Andy, a musician, said while Kiokya has great vocals, she also has the potential to get better. “She has dreams of being a professional singer and is good enough for it.”

Tears came to Kiokya’s eyes when she heard the crowd cheering “Kiokya, Kiokya Rising Star, Rising Star!” She was greeted by the young and old, including her grandmother, who also had became emotional when she saw the songbird. Kiokya was given a bouquet of flowers and showered with hugs and kisses as she alighted from the arrival lounge.

The overjoyed Kiokya declared: “I am so happy and excited and thankful to the Lord for his mercies and for my talent. I really want to thank all my supporters who voted for me. I couldn’t have made it without them.”

When asked if her achievement would change her, she said, “I am still the ordinary Kiokya and I am grateful for the opportunity. I was really nervous while singing but I enjoyed it. I had fun performing with Kimberly (Inniss); she was a bit disappointed that she didn’t win but she congratulated me on my success.”

The teen confessed on hearing the announcement that she had won brought tears to her eyes. She was in shock. “Although I was topping the polls, I didn’t know what to expect, but I am thankful.”

The celebration continued with a motorcade to Calliaqua, on to Barrouallie then ending back at her hometown Rillan Hill. It was a glorious sight as many ran out of their homes just to see the talented lass in person as she stood through the sun-roof of the vehicle and waving the Vincentian Flag.

Children seemed especially amazed to see the figure they had come to know via TV, now in real life, while Kiokya blew kisses to them as she drove by.

Beverline Taylor, who helped to organise the motorcade, said that she had to do something special for Kiokya to welcome her home. She said she watched Kiokya grow up with her own sons Jermain and Deryn Taylor where they formed a musical band.

Beverline noted that they once called themselves Kids for Christ, but they realised that they would grow up and made the name change to “New Generation.” She noted that Kiokya represented not only herself and country well, but her God.

As she relaxed at home with her neighbours, treated to cake and juice by her mother, they expressed joy that Kiokya had won.

Evelyn Douglas, a neighbour, said, “I feel really happy for her. I hope that she continues to sing gospel.”

Another neighbour Alfonso Carter lamented, “I am overjoyed, excited, I know that she has the talent within her. I am happy she has the gift, because her voice is smooth like olive oil and sweet as honey.”

Phylicia Fredrick a childhood friend said, “It’s really great knowing that Kiokya won. For the years that I’ve known her she has a cool personality about her. Her talent and coolness has brought her far. I’m glad that one of us has reached very far with our talent, it’s an encouragement to other young people in our village that you should never give up. We should always reach for the stars.”

Kiokya now has to get back to her studies for exams at the Technical College and, with her US$5000 cash prize, she plans to buy a computer and said that she would save the rest. Relaxing on the block outside her pink wall house, her daddy Cid joked, “She is a star, but she still has to wash the dishes in the kitchen when you guys leave.”

No doubt, Kiokya is truly blessed to have not only a beautiful voice but also parents who love her enough to keep her grounded.

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