Norwich singer eyes national talent contest final

A Norwich singer-songwriter is within touching distance of playing at one of the country's biggest venues.

Kolin Durier, of Whitworth Court, Old Catton, is through to the regional final of a national talent competition, and if he is successful he will be given a chance to perform at the O2 in London.

The 35-year-old is taking part in Open Mic UK 2011, and after succeeding in an audition in Bedford, he is returning to the town for a regional final.

Mr Durier, who works for a finance company, only started performing solo this year but thought he'd enter the over 23s category of the competition which is searching for the country's top singer-songwriters, rappers and vocalists.

He said: 'I have never entered a talent competition before. I started gigging this year on my own material, and was looking for open mic nights when I saw this online.' He auditioned alongside about 600 other hopefuls and went up in front of a panel of judges to perform his song Replay.

He said: 'It is like X Factor, with groups of six lining up and going forward to perform a piece. I played guitar and sang my own song, while some were accompanied by backing track.

'We were told that if they stopped the audition they had heard enough. I got one minute through and they stopped me.'

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The former Thorpe St Andrew high school student had impressed the judges and was put forward to the regional final on October 23. There he will perform in front of a large audience and professional judging panel, with the hope of qualifying for the chance to play at the O2 and compete for a recording contract.

This Thursday he will be performing at an open mic night at the Coach and Horses in Union Street, Norwich.

Are you competing in a national contest? Call 01603 772423 or email