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Sunday 22 October 2017

‘I wanted to ask Tom Jones what tan he wears’: Irish teen Claudia Rose wows judges on The Voice UK

Claudia Rose Long on The Voice UK
Claudia Rose Long on The Voice UK
Freya Drohan

Freya Drohan

Cork native Claudia Rose Long is tipped for major success after she bagged herself a place on Sir Tom Jones’ team on the popular BBC talent search.

The 17-year-old told Today FM’s Anton Savage that she was “jumping like a five year” when judges Ricky Wilson and Sir Tom Jones gave her the nod at the blind auditions on The Voice UK.

The Ballyphehane teen had all four judges dancing in their seats and singing along as she gave a powerful rendition of Jennifer Hudson’s ‘Love You I Do’ on Saturday night. Kaiser Chiefs frontman Ricky Wilson and iconic Welsh crooner Sir Tom Jones both saw the youngster’s potential and bidded for her to join their teams.

“I could not control my excitement,” Claudia said. “There was the slightest bit of ‘Oh not all four have turned,’ but I have the biggest crush on Ricky Wilson and Tom has always been the coach that would be my choice,” she revealed.

Claudia was left pinching herself when legendary star Tom praised her performance and called her a “powerhouse”.

“It was strong, you meant it and it sounded like you were singing the song you wanted to sing,” he told the young brunette.

Claudia, a six year student at Presentation Secondary School in Ballyphehane, said she still has goose bumps when she thinks about that surreal moment.

“I love being called the diva and a powerhouse, but for someone like that to say it to me is just incredible. Deep down I always had my heart set on him, and now I’m on his team,” she shared.

“I sing the old school stuff, my voice is based around the old divas, his music may not be right now but it’s timeless,” she added.

Next up, Claudia will sit down with her mentor and decide on song choices. After the show, she returned home to Ireland with her parents Rosarie and Jer but there was one burning question that she wanted to get off her chest right away.

“Tom is so tanned, I said, ‘Can I ask him what tan he uses,’ but apparently it’s natural,” she said.

“I love sunbathing, so I told him ‘You’re so tanned’ and he told me he was in LA the night before getting some colour, how lucky is he!”

Last year, Claudia performed for X-Factor judges Louis Walsh, Mel B, Cheryl Fernandez-Versini and Simon Cowell last year but her audition was never televised.

She was handpicked to audition for the Voice UK by a talent scout. She has been training with Cork-based singers Philip McTaggart and Mary Hegarty for the last number of years.

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