A SCHOOLGIRL has won a place in the next round of a national competition after taking to the stage for the first time.
Jessica Dale had never performed in public before she sang for the panel of judges in the TeenStar contest.
The 10-year-old from Castletown first took to the stage in the auditions, when they were held in Newcastle, belting out Yours, by Ella Henderson.
Her mum Sandra, said: “My friend entered her for the contest and then we got a call asking me to take her along to the audition.
“It was in front of 250 people and it was the first time she had ever sung on stage with an audience.
“She’s been talking about it non-stop.
Mum Sandra Dale
“I was worried she would go on and freeze, but she looked like she’d done it umpteen times before and she loved it. She was really shocked when she got through and we’d told her not to be disappointed or expect anything.
“But she’s been really calm about it.
“When I asked her about it I said was she nervous and how did she feel, but Jessica just said she was excited and asked if she could have her hair curled, and that she wasn’t going to think about it until she got backstage.
“She said she was nervous then, but just wanted to get on – and to think she opened the show.”
Jessica, who is a pupil at Castletown Primary and a member of the estate’s cubs group, is now enrolling in a performing arts club to prepare her for the next show.
The North East Area Final of the competition will be held in Huddersfield next month.
She is also being supported by dad Kevin, 49, and brother Jae, 14.