Silky skills lift pair to top spot
Kyla Rayward and Maia Adams have tumbled and climbed their way to win this year's Tasman's Got Talent contest.
Tasman District Council community recreation officer Paul McConachie said the girls stood out because of their professionalism.
After the two nine-year-olds performed at Motueka Memorial Hall on November 3, the council's video of their synchronised acrobatics pulled in 234 of the total 900 votes online.
"It was just quite different," Mr McConachie said.
"They brought the complete package, from their performance, to costume, to makeup."
Kyla, who goes to Mahana School, said she started learning how to use the silks two years ago after watching Damara Sylvester perform at the Riverside Community Centre.
"I was very tempted to get one so I kept asking Mum," she said.
Maia, from Lower Moutere School, joined her six months later, and the two now practise side-by-side at one another's homes. She said the iPad they won from Tasman's Got Talent would help their performance, as one of the main ways they learned new tricks was by copying videos on YouTube.
"That will be handy because we can go on YouTube [outside] by the silks and watch [the video] then do the tricks," she said. "No more running back and forth."
The two said they would share the iPad for now, but hoped to raise enough money for a second by busking over summer.
Maia's mother Nic Kelly said she did not worry about the girls' safety because she trusted their judgment.
"I reckon they've both been lucky because we both have outdoor backgrounds so we know how to rig a safe line and how to do spotting," she said. "They're both happy up there, Maia's never been scared on it."
Kyla's father Mark Rayward agreed, saying they had practised enough to know more about the sport than he did.
Nayland College student Chase Tangohau came a close second with his performance at the Richmond heat, earning 199 votes for his acoustic guitar performance.
Richmond's Esther Terrill's version of song Call Me Maybe earned her third place overall.
The Nelson Mail