HAMPSHIRE youngsters are to battle it out in a national contest to find the stars of tomorrow.

Amy Marsden and Samuel Jones, known as S-Jay, will both sing in front of major names in the music industry for the chance to be crowned champion of talent competition Teenstar 2014.

The talented singers will compete against each other and other young performers for the title in the final at the NEC in Birmingham today.

They are among 23 people left in the contest out of nearly 8,000 entries.

Previous winners include X Factor finalist Luke Friend and Hampshire’s own Birdy.

For Samuel, 11, of Locks Heath, it was an anxious wait as he did not make the final four, but was chosen as a wildcard entry for the region, and managed to get through thanks to public support.

Samuel said: “I couldn’t believe it when I was told I had got through. I thought they were joking. It’s amazing. I can’t wait for the grand finals.”

Both Samuel and Amy attend Brookfield Comm-unity School in Sarisbury Green and Vocademy Singing in Southampton, where they are coached by the same teacher, Bubsie Yates.

Amy, 12, from Titchfield Common, who has been singing for 18 months, studies musical theatre with Stagecoach and has been involved in the Mayflower Musical Youth Theatre.

On her journey through to the finals Amy sang Let It Go from the film Frozen, in the initial auditions followed by her own version of Miley Cyrus’ Wrecking Ball in the regional finals.

She said: “It’s been so exciting. At first I didn’t think I could get on stage and sing in front of all those people and now I’ve got to the finals.”

Samuel, who narrowly missed out on the final last year, is supported by mum Paula, who says her son used his singing to cope when she was diagnosed with cancer.

Both are preparing an original song for the final.

Run by Future Music, Teenstar looks for the UK’s best teen and pre-teen singers, singer-songwriters and rappers.

Past judges for the final have included Noddy Holder, Dane Bowers and Artful Dodger, but representatives from record labels will be on the lookout for future stars.

The young winner gets studio recording time, music development classes and £5,000.


You can help Samuel and Amy by voting for them after seeing their performance online at teenstarcompetition.co.uk.

For those acts in the judges’ top 3, their scores will be ranked and added to the text voting, which will also be ranked.

The acts with the combined highest ranking from audience and judges votes will be winners. 

Text TEEN04 for Amy and TEEN25 for Samuel to 84222.

Texts cost £1 and are capped at three.

Voting will end at 10pm after today’s performances.