A talent to be watching for

My Nikkel's Worth column

It’s always interesting to see up-and-coming musical and artistic talent in the community, particularly as one sees how young people are doing as they pursue their dreams.
A recent example was seeing how a shy, talented 15-year-old girl from Forget was given the opportunity to perform on the stage at Craven over the weekend.
Micah Walbaum had previously entered a contest held by 620 CKRM in Regina, and she did well enough there to place third, which she said kind of “shocked” her because she really didn’t think she would do that well.
(The first-place winner there was Amy Nelson, who I recently met as she sang in a little concert at Boston Pizza in support of a charity.)
Micah, and her mom Jacquie, are no strangers here, as she is a part of the group “Focal Point” that has performed here a couple of times, plus Micah has played at the fiddle contest several times, often with her mom on piano.
Jacquie has been a performer also, as she won the Estevan Idol contest back in her mid-20s, and in more recent years has been very much involved in music groups and programs, including performing with her husband Aaron.
When the Communithon held a concert day at the Cugnet Centre and Micah’s father was unable to perform, Micah stepped up and performed instead, doing a very good job of it.
When I chatted with Jacquie about the Craven experience, she noted her daughter has always been musical, often singing and writing her own little tunes and songs since she was little. She talked about how incredible and surreal it seemed to be on that stage, which she and her husband had never been able to aspire to as performers, but now here was their little girl putting herself forward and performing with her fiddle and singing.
I couldn’t help but see a small parallel to another girl who loved to sing, and was heard singing as she played on a swing in her backyard. The neighbour asked her mom if she had put her daughter into singing lessons, and encouraged her to try that.
Well, today that little girl, known more widely as Tenille Arts, is living and working in Nashville as a recording artist, and is making a name for herself. She’s sang on the TV show, The Bachelor, twice, did the national anthem at the NBA championship game and more recently did the anthem and a halftime show at the Riders game in Regina. This is in addition to the music she has been releasing and making videos with — but she started out very quietly making music and learning her craft, the guitar and writing songs. We can’t know the future, of course, but it will be exciting to see where a girl named Micah might go with her music.

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