For many aspiring singers, getting a standing ovation in the first audition of Britain’s Got Talent only to not make the semi-finals would bring disappointment and disillusionment.
But for Altrincham teenager Georgia Odette it has served as a springboard to move on to greater things.
Since then she has performed at the Diamond Jubilee Royal Gala and Wembley Arena, and with her first album in the pipeline the 15-year-old soprano says she holds no grudges.
“I was just grateful to get to the last 200 from the tens of thousands of people who auditioned and it was a good experience which has led me on to much greater and more prestigious things in the past three years,” she told MM.
“Although I can’t see myself competing again I know I will never regret auditioning.”
Aged 11 Georgia was asked to join The National Children’s Choir of Great Britain which gave her confidence in her singing ability, but it was when she focused her sights on Britain’s Got Talent that things began to take off.
“I forced my parents to let me enter the competition when I was 13 and I remember telling my mum that if she didn’t enter me I would make the call myself and hitch-hike a ride to the audition,” the youngster recalled.
“The exposure I gained has been phenomenal, a real help in my career so far. So I still look over the whole competition as a brilliant opportunity.”
She describes juggling school, a singing career and the pressures of growing up as really demanding, but Georgia has exhibited a tenacious spirit since she first discovered her talent in the Canzonetta Children’s Choir.
“My life is so crazy, but I’m kind of crazy myself so it all works pretty well! Whenever I’m given a ‘day off’ and told to relax I find it really hard. I’m the kind of person who likes to get stuff done and be productive so I don’t like being told to stop,” she said.
“I adore it! I couldn’t bear doing it all as much as I do if I didn’t enjoy it. It’s a phenomenal amount of work but I think it’s totally worth it.”
Like many aspiring teenage girls Georgia cites Beyonce – ‘Queen Bey’ – as an inspiration, along with Lady Gaga, though the latter more for her creativity than her music, but says her main influence is American singer Josh Groban.
However, unlike many teenage girls, Georgia has been able to live out her dreams and is taken aback by the openness with which people approach her music.
“It’s odd, because obviously classical, or popera-classical crossover music is not stereotypically what teenagers and people my age listen to, but it’s nice to see how receptive young people can actually be,”she said.
“I find that having someone like myself singing music like this, often with a modern twist makes this music more accessible to young people,” she muses.
Her ability has been opening avenues for her over the past few years, with a performance at Wembley Arena followed by the Best Original Song prize at Live and Unsigned Livefest at the O2 Arena.
This remarkable achievement led to singing for 12,000 people at the Birmingham LG Arena when Georgia was spotted by Jason Donovan, who invited her to perform at the Diamond Jubilee Royal Gala – a fitting finale for a stellar 2012.
Georgia clearly loves what she does, but, as with many rising stars, her success is something which occasionally attracts negative attention – though she is not fazed by the critics.
“There will always be people who don’t like what you are doing, even though they don’t know the half of it,” she says defiantly.
“But it’s simple to surround yourself with nice people and my friends and family are so supportive.”
The hard work has carried on through 2013, including singing with the Military Wives Choir and the Greater Manchester Police Band, with Georgia choosing her performance at the Buxton Opera House as the highlight of the year.
But this hectic schedule requires tireless organisation, and Georgia is thankful that her mum, Zoe, is there to steady the ship.
Zoe’s responsibilities include booking shows and hotels and the tasks associated with these such as travel arrangement and sound checks, but also stretch to dress-altering and dealing with the daily influx of administrative work.
Supporting such ambition leads Zoe to admit that they struggle at times to cope with it all as well as keeping school the priority, but she believes in her daughter and will carry on until Georgia can take over.
“I feel incredibly proud of Georgia,” she says. “I never set out to do any of this but it is what comes with the package. Hopefully once Georgia leaves school she will take on most of this!”
Georgia appreciates the sacrifices her parents have had to make, calling them ‘very supportive but never pushy’, and looks to her mum in those times when she needs to keep the world at bay.
“It [privacy] has never been a major problem for me and thankfully in general people tend to respect your privacy, although there have been a few occasions where I have been unhappy with the situation,” she admits.
“Luckily, my mum is pretty good at keeping me protected, so I don’t know what I would do without her. It’s a very fine line knowing what to keep private and share with people but I think at the moment the balance is right.”
With her album – a selection of original songs and her favourite covers – due out in 2014 and her online fashion boutique ‘Oh So Retro Clothing’ ticking over, Georgia is optimistic but to the point when considering what lies ahead.
“I could say the future holds hope, endless possibilities, dreams undreamt and is an unwritten book to which I hold the pen… but really, I just want to be able to make a living out of music.”
Image courtesy of Georgia Odette, with thanks