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End of the road at Idols but only the beginning of Zee’s musical journey

Singer wants to follow in Shekhinah's footsteps

Masego Seemela Online journalist
Zee Arnolds exit Idols SA at Heartfelt Arena in Pretoria.
Zee Arnolds exit Idols SA at Heartfelt Arena in Pretoria.
Image: Veli Nhlapo

From watching Idols SA at home to gracing the main stage, Zee hopes to have an illustrious career similar to that of her muse, Shekhinah.

Zee is the recent contestant to be eliminated from the singing competition – leaving Ty Loner, Thapelo, Noxolo and Nozi in the top four.

Speaking to Sowetan on Monday morning, a shaken and disappointed Zee expressed how sad she was that she didn’t get enough votes to make it to the next round, she, however, expressed how grateful she was to have been able to showcase her talent on national television.

She said that the success story of award-winning singer Shekhinah, who was also eliminated in season eight of Idols, gave her hope during this “confusing” time.

“I have mixed emotions… it’s sad leaving but I am proud of myself for how far I got in the competition. I wasn’t expecting to be eliminated in the top five but everything happens for the greater good,” said the 18-year-old.

“It might be the end of the road for Idols but it’s only the beginning for me and my musical journey. Getting eliminated simply says that I now have to start working on my singing career much like how Shekinah did – from my observation, she never lost hope but rather became one of the biggest singers of our era, so I’m definitely taking a page from her book.”

Having been an avid viewer of the reality show competition from a young age, Zee recalls being intimidated at the beginning of her journey in the singing show but soon grew her confidence week after week while singing on stage.

“My journey on Idols was fun and amazing, I learnt a lot of things about myself that I didn’t even know and I came out a different person than I was when I first got in earlier this year,” she said.

“I’d been wanting to enter Idols but I was young at the time… until I was 15 I prepared myself emotionally to one day be on the show. I’ve always wanted to be on the show but my mother told me to wait till I finished school. So, after I matriculated last year, I immediately jumped at the opportunity to audition this year.”

Despite not making it to the next round, Zee, who describes herself as an introvert, gave herself a pat on the back for tackling one of her biggest struggles, interacting with people. “I am glad I had the experience of being known on such a larger scale. It allowed me to break out of my shell and I’m thankful for that because I can approach other things with confidence now,” she said.  

“I used to limit and restrict myself from trying new things because I thought I couldn’t do it but with this newfound confidence, I now know I can.”

Zee was known to viewers for slaying most of her performances; she, however, noted her last performance at theatre week as one of her highlights. “Yes, the live show was amazing to perform at but performing at theatre week for the last time was it for me. I remember being so nervous because I wanted so badly to make it through… I gave it my all and I will forever remember that performance for as long as I live,” said the singer from Cape Town.

“The advice I received from the judges that I plan to take with me going forward is to stay true to myself and always choose things that will help structure your career.”

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