The MK schoolgirl who became an overnight celebrity on Britain’s Got Talent insisted this week: “I’m just a normal 15-year-old.”
Singing sensation Sarah Ikumu vowed an audience of millions and prompted Simon Cowell to hit the golden buzzer and rocket her to the semi-final.
“I never ever dreamed that would happen. In fact, I was terrified about performing because of what Simon might say about me,” she told the Citizen.
“Before I went on stage I was shaking with nerves. But as soon as I started singing I was fine. It’s like my alter ego took over!”
The daughter of a pastor, Sarah gave her debut performance at the tender age of five, singing Amazing Grace in her dad’s Freedom House church.
“All I wanted to do was sing. I don’t know where it comes from because my parents aren’t musical at all,” she said.
In 2011 Sarah’s family moved from MK to Kenya for a couple of years.
There word spread about Sarah’s remarkable singing voice and she was snapped up to perform at theatres and weddings.
When the family moved back to their Grange Farm home, Sarah entered the local Teen Star competition, where she reached the grand final.
Last year her music teacher at Hazeley Academy persuaded her to enter a Rotary Club event to win the title of MK Young Musician of the Year.
Meanwhile Sarah’s mum Grace suggested repeatedly she enter Britain’s Got Talent - but Sarah refused.
“I was too scared - particularly of Simon!” she said. “But eventually I agreed, and I’m glad I did. I loved every minute of it!”
The Year 11 student at Hazeley, Sarah is due to take 10 GCSE exams next month. She is currently juggling revision with voice training sessions for the BGT semi-final.
Sarah went back to school on April 18 after the Easter break.
“People went crazy,” she said. “The head teacher asked me to sing in assembly but I was too shy to do it.”
Sarah performed ‘And I Am Telling You’ on BGT. Originally from the Broadway hit Dreamgirls, the song was released as a single by Jennifer Holliday in 1982.