Wed | Dec 6, 2023

20-y-o Rising Star Remone Watson eyes 'The Voice'

Published:Monday | October 2, 2023 | 7:02 PMJada Powell/Gleaner Writer -
Remone Watson is announced as the 2023 'Digicel Rising Stars' champion.
Remone Watson is announced as the 2023 'Digicel Rising Stars' champion.

Amid an atmosphere pulsating with anticipation and excitement, the 2023 'Digicel Rising Stars' competition reached its thrilling conclusion. In this exhilarating culmination, Remone Watson, a 20-year-old show player at Sandals Montego Bay, emerged as the champion, claiming the spotlight and coveted title.

The eagerly awaited announcement was made on Sunday by new host, Talia Soares. Watson walked away from the 'Digicel Rising Stars' competition with a cash prize of $1.5 million, a smartphone and credit, courtesy of Digicel.

In a competitive finale, 24-year-old Jhanelle ‘Lady J’ Thompson claimed the second spot, with Sashae Evans, 29, taking third place. Thompson walked away with a cash prize of $600,000, while Evans received $400,000. Both received a smartphone and credit.

The night featured captivating performances by noted gospel entertainer Kevin Downswell performing All I Want is You and Grace; J Calm, Tempted; D’Yani, Live a Little and last year’s winner Mozein Sutherland, Johnny Gill’s My My My. Sutherland, who was a Camperdown High School student when he won the competition in 2022, is a now a student of the G.C. Foster College of Physical Education & Sport, studying massage therapy.

Following the announcement of the winner, Watson closed the show with a heartfelt performance of Barry White’s Practice What You Preach.

In an interview with The Sunday Gleaner, Watson shared that he plans to take his talent to the global stage, where he hopes to enter ‘The Voice’, the United States-based talent competition won by Jamaica’s own Tessanne Chin in 2013.

"My next motive is to embrace [my] gift and have my gift soar and also represent Jamaica internationally ... because I don’t think a lot of conscious music is coming from youths these days, So I think it would be something great to enter [this international competition] with hopes of winning, and make Jamaica proud ,” Watson later told THE STAR.

'Digicel Rising Stars' was first aired in 2004. Many of its winners have gone on to achieve great success in the entertainment industry, including Romain Virgo, who won the competition in 2007; Christopher Martin, in 2005, and Dalton Harris in 2010.