Becoming The Final 1 is surreal

SINGAPORE - Undergraduate Farisha Ishak, 19, emerged as the winner of talent show The Final 1, after an intense showdown against finalist Shaun Jansen, 28, on Wednesday night.

Ms Farisha, who won $50,000 and a recording contract with Hype records, speaks to My Paper about her experience.

Do you intend to further your singing career?

I'll definitely take that recording contract, because I don't really have a choice, right? (laughs)

I intend to expand my music regionally and perhaps internationally as well.

Do you have a backup plan?

Studies would definitely be my backup plan, because I know the direction that I want to go in my studies and career, so I do have (my) degree in mind.

Even before this competition...I'd already dreamt of what I wanted to do in university: (pursue) a master's and more. I aim to study political science (as my major).

What will your debut album sound like?

Because my original (songs) are somewhat very Corinne Bailey Rae, I really hope to have songs that (sound) like that, as well as ones that sound a bit like Emeli Sande and ballads.

What made you try out for The Final 1?

I have to admit that, at first, I entered the competition because I wanted to see how far I could go.

As I've always been a fan of Singapore Idol and all these (Singapore talent shows), I also wanted to see what happens behind the scenes.

Initially, it was just to expose myself to the industry and what's behind it. But, as the competition progressed, especially during the top 20 rounds, I started feeling like I could actually win it.

How have you developed as a person and as a singer?

I think I'm definitely a more confident person now, not only on stage, but in front of people as well. It takes quite a lot of confidence to sit here and talk to you guys. (laughs)

I definitely think that I've grown to be more confident.

What is the most valuable piece of advice that you have received from the judges?

It was from Ken Lim. He told me that, if one chooses to embark on something, one either goes all the way or not do it at all.

And I felt that today was the epitome of it.

How does it feel to go from being virtually unknown to having this type of success in less than a year?

I just feel so accomplished and it is so fulfilling, not only to have finished the competition, but also that I've grown so much.

To actually win it, it is so surreal and mind-blowing.

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