17-y-o footballer Mozein Sutherland is 2022 Digicel Rising Star
Mozein Sutherland is the winner of Season 18 of 'Digicel Rising Stars'.
The popular talent series, which concluded in an intense two-hour results show last night, came down to three finalists -- Sutherland, Oshene Watson, and Robert Ewart -- making it the first time in the show's history that three contestants battled for the top spot.
The final three opened the show with an electrifying performance of Fame by Irene Cara. Before the grand announcement made by host Terri-Karelle Reid, several past contestants, winners and performers took the stage, treating the audience and viewers to moments of nostalgia. But the light atmosphere quickly became tense as it drew closer to the reveal of the 2022 winner.
By the time it came down to the last five minutes of the live show, the faces of the contenders showed the anxiety they felt as they waited to hear who would take the title.
Third place was announced first, going to Watson from St Thomas. In second place was Ewart.
Lost for words, when his name was called, 17-year-old Sutherland, an attacking midfielder on the Camperdown High School football team, fell to the ground, did a few push-ups before expressing gratitude for all those who supported him.
"Thank you to everyone that voted for me. Everyone that supported me. My parents, the whole Jamaica Constabulary Force. Everybody, the judges. I just want to say thank you very much from the bottom of my heart," he said as he collected his mega $1.5 million cheque.
He then closed the show with a powerful performance of Lightning by Mortimer.
Across the last 10 weeks, contestants sang their hearts out in hopes of impressing the judges and the viewers at home, who ultimately have the final say in who walks home with the $1.5 million and other prizes.
Contestants Brianna Warren, Ramon Johnston, Tamara Warren, Row J Rose, Brandon Williams, Orane Green, Channing Bryan and Shaunette Cameron were all eliminated throughout the show.
'Digicel Rising Stars' began in 2004 with a mission of unearthing talented Jamaicans and giving them a shot at fame. The first winner of the show was Cavan. Over the years, other winners include Romain Virgo, Christopher Martin, One Third, Shuga, and others.
The popular television show returned in July following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Auditions took place online through the Digicel BIP app.