Teen sensation glad to be home

23:47, Dec 09 2012
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Clara van Wel winner of Marlborough's got Talent
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Support: Clara van Wel lends a hand at John's Kitchen, her nominated charity for Stars in Your Eyes
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Business savvy: Members of the conceptual business team Puju, from left, Tahlia-Rose Simmonds, Ella Arnst, Laura McLeod, Julia Andrews and Clara van Wel, won the three-day business challenge brought to Marlborough Girls' College by Yolande Rosario, right, and Jared Tasker, front, from the Young Enterprise Trust.
Marlborough teenager Clara Van Wel has been crowned the inaugural winner of New Zealand's Got Talent.
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Top talent: Clara performs an original song, Where Do You Find Love?, after being announced winner of New Zealand’s Got Talent last night.
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Stars In Their Eyes competition June 2012: Clara van Wel as Ricki Lee Jones singing Chuck E's in Love.
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Lee Stewart and Clara van Wel singing their own composition in a fundraiser for Canterbury
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Friends Vicky Mack, Olivia Sheat and Clara van Wel entertain the residents at Waterlea Rest home in August 2011.
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The Classic Hits Winery Tour 2012: Clara van Wel performs at Villa Maria Estate Winery in Marlborough alongside Avalanche City, The Muttonbirds and Gin Wigmore. Clara Van Wel performs.
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Clara van Wel, winner in the Marlborough final of the 2012 Smokefree Rock Quest in June 2012
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Clara van Wel at home in 2010
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Clara van Wel as Bic Runga in Stars in Your Eyes, Blenheim 2010
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Clara van Wel entertains at the Marlborough Farmers Market in 2009
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Clara van Wel on Good Morning
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Clara van Wel during a photo shoot
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Clara van Wel during a photo shoot
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Clara van Wel with her father Alex van Wel on Breakfast
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Clara van Wel talks about her single 'Where do you find love' now available on iTunes
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Taking a break: Clara van Wel happy to be at home in Blenheim with Scratchy the jack russell
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Clara van Wel at home in Marlborough. Enjoying a walk with Scratchy
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Clara van Wel. Glad to be home in Marlborough
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STAR: Clara van Wel performs during the Classic Hits Winery tour.

Sleep was foremost on Clara van Wel's mind on her return home to Blenheim last week.

First though, the teen singing sensation had to perform at a real estate Christmas party that was booked before she earned celebrity status as the winner of New Zealand's Got Talent.

True to her word, 15-year-old Clara sang for about an hour at Blenheim's Wairau River Wines on Friday, earning her $250.

The Marlborough Girls' College student was booked for the festive bash two months ago at an hourly rate of $100.

The company decided to up their payment given Clara's new-found fame.

Her win on the popular TV One talent show last Sunday bagged Clara a cool $100,000 prizemoney, a new car and a contract with Sony for one album, to be released in February.

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Back in Blenheim, Clara was ensuring she kept her focus on music.

"For me, it's all about the music," she said.

The past week had been a "blur" of people, media interviews, music recordings and meetings, so spending time with friends, family and her 11-year-old jack russell, Scratchy - not to mention getting some sleep - were her main priorities.

The first thing she did when she got home was lay on her bed.

Clara spent three long days in the studio recording her singles, Where Do You Find Love, Between The Lines and Lines You Traced, released on iTunes on Friday last week and on CD single from Wednesday.

Clara's unique voice was nurtured when she lived in England, where she lived till she was seven. She began a three-year singing lesson stint with renowned teacher Alice Tierney, who has worked with artists in London's West End as well as people with disabilities.

"She was amazing. She didn't try and make me sing differently - she just encouraged me to hone something that naturally came to me," Clara said.

Alongside her unique voice she has forged a somewhat unique style, with her shiny white Doc Marten ankle boots.

Clara described them as her "memento" from being on the show after stylist Briar Neville let her wear them.

Looking back on her experiences over the last few months during her involvement with the show, it was still fairly hard to believe, she said.

"It's all a pretty fun experience, it's something that I've enjoyed. It's been a dream come true, but it's also been a rollercoaster ride."

Over the summer break, Clara plans to fit in some camping and work on her new album. She has yet to decide with her family about what to do with the car and prizemoney.

The Marlborough Express