Last night’s unexpected win for this 22-year old young man was a huge lesson that for all the talk of image-selling and marketability factor, what Singaporeans in general look for in a winning Idol are the factors of humility and likeability, two traits that best describe our newly-crowned champion. I thought this season’s Singapore Idol competition was closer and tougher than the previous two, with Sylvia Ratonel being the favourite coming into last night’s Grand Finale, especially since she had the strong backing of the three judges.
Sezairi might not be as good-looking or suave as his predecessors, but in his own right, he is a talented musician, a soulful crooner, a picture of calm and serenity in the face of adversity week in and week out. But above all that, he has never let down the audience with his confident performances and moreso last night when he delivered three knock-out punches when it mattered. Sylvia I have to admit, was my favourite from the beginning of the competition, but somehow when the crunch time came, she was a bundle of nerves and looked as though she was overawed by the occasion. Sezairi took control right from the start and listening to him sing “Touched By An Angel“, one could feel his emotions and soul being put forth with more sincerity and feel than Sylvia. Which was why for the first time this season, I was inclined to finally cast my votes and to the person I felt deserved it more.
Yes, Sezairi‘s win is another feather in the cap for our community and I’m very proud of him, as much as I was proud of Taufik Batisah and Hady Mirza winning in the past. But I’m not looking at it as a win for the community, but a win for Singaporeans in general because I believe the votes were cast without prejudice nor biasness, without having to see the colour of one’s skin to sway the voter’s decision. All the racist talks being bandied around yet again over a Malay winning this competition I believe, came from people who did not do their part by voting or voting enough. It doesn’t matter if we were to have a Malay representing us or a half-Filipino. The fact is they are Singaporeans and I’m sure they are proud to carry the flag no matter where they go.
Sezairi‘s win I would like to add, brings a little ray of sunshine to the community which has been portrayed a bit negatively by our media scribes of late. I guess I don’t have to list down one by one what they are. I also don’t wish to be the wet blanket or party pooper, taking the limelight away from Sezairi, as alleged by a few snide remarks I got last night when I Twitted that we can do better academically as well. Yes we are good at football and singing, that’s a given fact and reflected by yesterday’s Berita Minggu article, but what I meant was actually we can do better in other aspects to add on to these two fields cos I’m sure we have gifted and unpolished diamonds waiting to make a name for themselves in many others. I was accused of killing the moment for the boy when people should actually look at things in the bigger picture. We can be happy and celebrate this win, but do not forget that with every success, we always have to remain grounded and spare a thought for those who might be lacking in our midst.
To Sezairi, you are very much worthy of being an Idol winner, of representing Singapore as a singing ambassador, and above all, of being able to be a positive role model to the community and nation. I look forward to you gracing our music industry, stamping your mark as a performer and spreading your wings as a talented composer and musician. Enjoy the moment, embrace the win, cos you deserve it for not only being one hell of a singer with soul, but for remaining true to yourself by staying humble, likeable and sincere. No one should begrudge you for that nor take it away from you. I certainly don’t… Congratulations Champ!!! Your journey has just begun…