Physio in the running for the Voice of Ireland

A physiotherapist from Northern Ireland could be on the verge of stardom after she was selected to sing on Ireland’s version of the TV talent show, The Voice.

Fiona McCourt currently works with the Northern Ireland Cancer Network as Macmillan regional coordinator for patient information and previously as a research physio in the adult cystic fibrosis unit of Belfast City Hospital.

But the 27 year-old has always had a passion for music, and has played at singer/songwriter gigs across her home town of Belfast and also Manchester, where she studied physiotherapy, since she was 15.

Ms McCourt says she had taken a break from music while studying for her PhD at the University of Ulster, where she worked to identify the important indicators of a pulmonary exacerbation in adults with cystic fibrosis.

But a week after handing in her thesis she was back singing again, this time in front of the TV cameras.

‘I decided to really go for it this year, and auditioned for Ireland’s version of the hit TV show The Voice,’ said Ms McCourt.

Her ‘blind audition’ round was aired on Irish TV on 6 January.

‘I sang Sam Sparro’s Black and Gold and I was lucky to have Sharon Corr turn her chair and pick me for her team.’

Ms McCourt is now preparing to face the ‘battle’ round involving a sing-off with a fellow contestant to make it through to the live shows, which will take place from the end of February.

The prize for the overall winner is a record deal with Universal Music.

‘I’m managing to fit the show in around work,’ Ms McCourt told Frontline. ‘It’s exhausting but so exciting, I’m now just trying to make the most of this opportunity – and get over my shyness!’

The Voice of Ireland is aired on Sunday evenings on Ireland’s RTE One channel. Programmes can be seen on paid for TV or on YouTube.

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Sally Priestley

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