Idols SA Season 18: South African audiences were treated to the season premiere of Idols SA

Different voices carry the day – Idols SA
Different voices carry the day – Idols SA


South African Idols Season 18

While we’re very much still in the early days, it’s always fun to try and make a few predictions for the coming season based on the opening episode, so that’s what we’ll be doing.
A microphone with some lights in the background.

The theme for the season is “Singing a different tune”, and the auditions that won a Golden Ticket seemed to lean into that motto well.

The first came from Zadwesh, who bucked the trend and auditioned with a self-penned composition – usually seen as a very risky choice: not only does a hopeful have to sing well, but they need to be very confident that their songwriting abilities are good enough to carry the day, too. On this occasion, however, it did the job.

From the jump, it was clear that Zadwesh could sing, and his choice of song was the perfect vehicle to get that fact across.

At some point in the composition, Somizi stepped in and told the young man to sing a capella, and Zadwesh did so with aplomb.

It was a stunning opening audition to the season.

The very next audition came from Anuchka, who made no bones about the fact that she was very nervous. A young lady from Oudshoorn, she attempted to stand out from the crowd by singing a Zulu song from Amanda Black.

Her audition received numerous nods of approval from Thembi, and finished with a total of three “yeses” which was more than enough to earn her a place in Theatre Week.

Another audition that surprised the judges came from Lilita, whose unprepossessing demeanor may have led to certain preconceptions being formed by the judges, but her performance disabused them of those notions very quickly.

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As Somizi put it, sometimes it’s better to be a surprise. Well, surprise them she did.

The final audition we’ll speak about came from Kaylene; much was made about the fact that she is rapper AKA’s cousin, but she made it very clear that she does not intend to use that familial connection to advance her career, opting to make a go of it herself. She very much went. The judges loved her performance, with JR saying that she is a “pop producer’s dream”, and she will be going on to Theatre Week.

There were – of course – more Golden Ticket auditions, and you can watch them all here, but this selection gives a good indication of how the new theme might be guiding the judges in their decision-making. We’ve still got numerous days’ worth of auditions to come, and time will tell if the trend continues.

Idols SA season 18 airs on Mzansi Magic at 17:30 on Sundays.