From education to employment

Greenwich student’s big chance to shine at the 02

A London South East Colleges’ student has been chosen to perform as a support act for former X Factor winner Louisa Johnson at London’s O2 Arena later this month.

18-year-old Shania Kathapurmall from Plumstead will take centre-stage and walk out in front of hundreds of fans to sing three songs on Friday 18 May.

Shania was chosen by a panel of judges after auditioning for the Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT) 25th Anniversary Show. She went along after learning about the competition at her local youth club in Greenwich.

The budding singer and actress has a desire to travel the world and would like to work as a singer on a cruise ship after completing her studies. Before enrolling on her Performing Arts (Acting) Level 3 Diploma, she studied for the Travel and Tourism Level 2 Certificate at our Greenwich Campus. This means she has acquired skills to work in the travel industry as well as being given an excellent grounding in the art of acting, singing, and dancing.

Shania is also multilingual, being fluent in English, French, and Italian and will be performing one of her songs in Spanish – Luna by Malu Traejo. Her eclectic mix of tempo and musical style will also include a medley of T-Pain tunes and the classic Valerie by Amy Winehouse.

Although Shania will be performing solo on stage, there will be three other young people sharing the limelight on the night. All four were chosen in the Perform Talent Competition which is open to young people aged between 10 and 19. From the hundreds of acts who sent in recordings for Perform, just ten were shortlisted and invited to audition live at the O2. The panel of professional judges included Absolute Radio presenter Dave Berry and singer-songwriter Autumn Sharif – a former winner of the competition.

Speaking about her achievements, Shania says:

“I am so nervous but at the same time, excited. I am counting the days and practicing hard; both at College and at home. This is definitely the biggest thing I’ve ever done.


“At the audition I decided to sing one of my all-time favourite songs, Mercy by Duffy. It was a big song requiring a big voice and I think I carried it off fairly well. The judges were very impressed and congratulated me on an excellent audition. When my name came up as one of the winners I was literally speechless. I haven’t stopped smiling since.”


Performing arts tutor, Sam Punnett is very proud of Shania’s achievement. She says: “Shania is a very good vocalist indeed. I wasn’t at all surprised to find out she had been chosen for the concert. Her fellow students and the entire performing arts team are behind her all the way. This is huge and could actually be a life-changing experience for this very talented young lady.”

If you think you have what it takes to become a professional actor, dancer, singer, set designer or make-up artist and build a successful career in the theatre or film and TV industries, London South East Colleges has a great range of courses to get you started. Come along to one of our events:

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