Wednesday 26 October 2016

Karate kid Jesse Jane wows millions on Ellen DeGeneres Show

JJ McParland previously caught the eye of Simon Cowell on Britain's Got Talent

Laura Abernethy

Published 19/11/2015 | 09:17

Northern Ireland's little ninja has shown off her martial arts skills to millions on one of America's biggest shows.

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Former Britain's Got Talent star Jesse Jane McParland, from County Armagh, appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres Show after the host spotted the 10-year-old in a viral video on the internet.

The clip of her competing was watched by 91 million people and was even shared by US Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton and Nicole Scherzinger.

Jesse Jane and her dad, Gary, headed out to the US at the weekend, where she filmed the programme alongside her idols One Direction on Tuesday.

The pre-recorded show was aired in America last night and attracted millions of viewers.

It saw Jesse Jane tell Ellen: "Mummy and daddy wanted me to get into a sport. They wanted me to do basketball, but I saw people doing martial arts and I said 'Daddy, daddy, look at this'. But he said it was too dangerous.

“Not every girl dreams of being a little princess.”

Posted by Ellen DeGeneres on Wednesday, November 18, 2015

"We went to watch basketball, but I couldn't stop thinking about karate. We went home and mummy asked why I didn't like ballet or Irish dancing, and I said, 'Not every girl dreams of being a little princess'. The next Saturday, daddy took me to karate."

After Jesse Jane performed one of her energetic routines with a sword, she got a standing ovation and Ellen said: "Wow. That was so impressive."

Her mum, Sinead, stayed at home in Keady with her three younger sisters, Mollie Mae, Sugar Rae and newborn baby Rocca-Liu. Yesterday, she said: "JJ was so excited to go to LA. I was nervous but delighted as Ellen is a really great show to be on. The first thing JJ said was, 'Back to LA where the sun lives'. She couldn't wait. She had to take a few days off school, but she made sure she didn't fall behind on her work.

"One Direction were in the studio, so JJ was delighted as she adores them and had met them before on BGT. She said that Ellen was really lovely and gave her some gifts. She loved performing on the show, and she told me that it was the best feeling in the world."

Ellen presented JJ with a special Ellen DeGeneres Show sword and an outfit emblazoned with "Golden Dragon" - the nickname given to JJ because of her golden hair.

The 10-year-old flew home yesterday after a whirlwind few days and is now focused on adding to the 172 titles she has won since she started martial arts at the age of three.

Sinead added: "JJ has exciting projects coming up, but obviously competing is her passion and she takes it very seriously.

"The Irish Open starts in March 2016 and the WAKO world championships are also in Dublin this year. To win a world title in Dublin would be amazing for JJ, so she will be training and working towards these two massive tournaments."

Belfast Telegraph

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