© 2014 By Bob Litton. All Rights Reserved.
NOTE TO READERS: Well, today is a red-letter day in my calendar: It is the first year anniversary of Amira Willighagen’s earning the trophy at Holland’s Got Talent competition.
As some of you will have noticed (and probably wondered at), I have already published, last November 12, an announcement of the anniversary. I confess: I intended to hold that writing until today; but, as often happens with me, it got hot in my little hands; I just had to broadcast it to the world then and there. Those of you who did not read it back in November can peruse it now, if you like, by clicking on the second highlighted URL below.
That actually was my second review of Amira’s now several YouTube videos, which I view often. The first piece I wrote about her was published on this blog site back on June 8; that was just after I had viewed for the first time the three performances she made on HGT. The URL for the June 8 post is provided below (the top one).
I do not really have much new on which to comment today except that on November 8 Amira and her family were in Vatican City, Rome, where she received awards from the Giuseppe Sciacca Foundation for her accomplishments in music and service to the community. She sang “Ave Maria” on that occasion, but I was able to view it only once before the video was removed due to some copyright issue with Sony Music Entertainment: the removal was not at all explained and is a major disappointment; but “that’s show biz”, I guess. Also, last Saturday I discovered that on December 15 Amira sang “O Holy Night” (in English) during a Christmas entertainment at the Royal Albert Hall in London.
Opera soprano great Maria Callas reportedly lost her singing ability after she intentionally started losing weight. My question is, is it better to have a continuing vocal career or a healthy body? Since Amira has already repeatedly stated she might opt for an athletic career instead of a singing one, then I believe she values her body overall above her voice. As an adult, her vocal ability will lose its exceptional character; and I hope and trust she will modestly accept blending in with the other talented adults with whom she will perform. As for athletic ambition, two of my friends have had to undergo knee replacements in their middle years because of the jogging and foot-racing enthusiasms they enjoyed in their youths: Every choice comes with a price.
Even if Amira does lose her vocal talent from singing “too early”, she will have the past year to look back on as possibly the happiest in her life, not because she attracted so much admiring attention but because of her adventures: the suspense of the audition; the support of her family, friends, audiences; her travels to other countries; her appearance with Andre Rieu at Maastricht; her CD triumph; her receipt of the humanitarian award in Vatican City; and appreciative applause from people around the world, including this 75-year-old curmudgeon.
Her family is a unity: her parents support her but also limit (as does Netherlands law, I understand) the number of times she can appear at concerts and interviews during a single year; from what I have seen of their home on YouTube they are financially secure enough to enjoy life without depending on any income from Amira’s concerts, half of which she is contributing to a charity she herself established. Amira appears to have as much common sense as she does singing ability; I doubt that she will do anything purposely that would endanger her future welfare, whatever she deems that to be.
I do not know whether I will have any future occasion to comment on Amira’s career. I doubt it, since the only value in what I have said to date concerns gauging her entrance onto the world’s walk of fame, and I have done all that. She has arrived. She has her own Internet site now where she logs all the noteworthy events in her life. All I can say is…
P.S. Be sure to check out my blog tomorrow (December 29), for it will be another anniversary — of my birth back in 1939. I have written a special post for it.