Mimi Wahab dazzles

Hakim Hayat

The first season of the reality singing talent search show Bintang Search crowned its first winner, with Mimi Wahab taking the title during the show’s Season Finale Concert streamed on OOPs! Channel on YouTube on Sunday evening.

The over one-and-a-half-hour season finale concert marked the culmination of the nine-week-long online-streaming entertainment programme, the first of its kind in the sultanate, that has successfully unearthed hidden talents in Brunei, right from its auditions that saw over 400 individuals trying their luck, to its final concert two weeks ago, where five finalists were announced – Mimi Wahab, Sami Alli, Najrul Maznibi, Khairul Nadzri and Maya Walker.

Befitting for a season finale, the dazzling show began with the top five finalists coming together singing the show’s theme song Merasa Bintang, followed by special performances by judges Fakhrul Razi, Nana Farhana and Rizal Rasid and also the finalists.

Some of the highlights of the evening included a powerful rendition of the popular 80s Malay song Isabella by the male judges and finalists, and also another classic Malay song Cinta Di Akhir Garisan by the female judges and finalists.

The finale featured the final performances of Bintang Search finalists Mimi Wahab
with her rendition of This is Me by Keala Settle; Najrul Maznibi with Final Countdown by Europe, Maya Walker with Adele’s Remedy, Sami Ally and the rock classic- Kekasihku Di Menara by Ukays and Khairul Nadzri dedicating a song for his family with Semua Demi Kamu by Angga Candra.

The five finalists proved the adage “practice makes perfect” as their singing, stage presence and confidence all improved greatly in a relatively short time.

The first season of the reality talent search show Bintang Search crowned Mimi Wahab as the winner during the show’s Season Finale Concert that was streamed on OOPs! Channel on YouTube on Sunday evening. PHOTO: HAKIM HAYAT

Mimi Wahab took home the grand prize of BND5,000 sponsored by imagine; while all the finalists also took home BND1,000 each sponsored by NBT Toyota Brunei.

The YouTube-based programme has regularly produced concerts and behind-the scenes content for the past nine weeks and amassed a sizable following of loyal viewers.

Bintang Search creator Siti Kamaluddin said, “It’s amazing what Bruneians can accomplish with dedication and commitment. In a little over two months these finalists have potentially changed the course of their lives.”

The contestants were not the only ones to use Bintang Search as a launch pad, during the finale the three celebrity judges: Fakhrul Razi, Nana Farhana and Rizal Rasid debuted new singles and used the opportunity to sing classic Malay songs with the finalists.

Bintang Search also provided a platform for its sponsors such as imagine, NBT Toyota Brunei and Brunei Press to provide direct support to the local creative industry.

The contestants’ journey throughout Bintang Search was driven by 100 per cent voting facilitated through the OOPs! website which is anticipated to have over 100,000 unique views over the past two months of competition, while the shows on YouTube have garnered near 900,000 views.

The show’s producers said that this isn’t the end of the Bintang universe. OOPs! said that they will continue to release recaps of the programme releasing some of its best auditions, performances and memories from Road to Bintang especially for its loyal supporters.

The winner of the first season of Bintang Search, Mimi Wahab said “Bintang Search has given me an insight into the industry and I am ready to take on this new journey ahead. I am very grateful for the platform given, the classes and the mentors from Bintang Search as they have prepared me for this. I’d like to thank OOPs! for this programme, the production, the judges, especially my family and voters who have stayed with me this far.”