The Telegraph
Saturday , June 7 , 2014
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Singing nun wins Italy TV talent show

Rome, June 6: She trilled and thrilled millions of YouTube viewers with songs by Alicia Keys, Cyndi Lauper and Bon Jovi. She belted out a duet with Kylie Minogue, both of them clad in black, albeit with vastly different approaches to style.

And just after midnight yesterday, Sister Cristina Scuccia, the Sicilian singing nun who has become a worldwide sensation, won the second edition of the TV talent competition The Voice of Italy after singing a rousing version of What a Feeling, the Oscar-winning song from the 1983 film Flashdance, accompanied by a chorus line of dancers dressed as monks, who threw off their habits to reveal pastel-coloured suits.

“My dream is to recite Our Father together,” she said upon winning, intoning the Lord’s Prayer, while the show’s judges shuffled their feet and mumbled, visibly embarrassed. The show’s host noted her “very original way” of accepting.

On the wave of the global success of her video singing Keys’s No One, viewed online by 51 million people since it was posted in March, Sister Cristina’s victory — with more than 60 per cent of the votes cast — came as little surprise.

The bigger question mark in a country where some polls suggest that a majority of Italian women aspire to television fame is whether success will go to the head of the 25-year-old nun, possibly leading her ashtray from her calling. Winning the competition, after all, comes with a recording contract.

“There are plenty of people guiding her who will help organise her artistic activity. I think she has a lot of support,” said Claudia Koll, an actress who enrolled Sister Cristina at the drama school she runs at a nunnery in Rome after hearing her perform.