I Can See Your Voice: Portsmouth singer Amba Tremain stars on BBC primetime hit show as Class Act
PORTSMOUTH singer Amba Tremain has appeared on BBC1’s primetime Saturday evening show, I Can See Your Voice, helping to hoodwink a panel of celebrities and contestants.
I Can See Your Voice features two players aiming to win a cash prize by guessing who can and can’t sing from a group of mystery singers.
If they can work out who has a great singing voice, then they win £10,000.
Amba was approached by the production company last summer and asked to take part.
‘I do get the odd thing that comes in, asking me to audition for this and that, like The Voice and things, but I've never really liked that route so much – I don't really want to potentially tie myself into bootcamps and that sort of thing,’ she said.
Amba, 40, won the ITV talent show This Is My Moment back in 2001, and has worked as a singer ever since. She is also the co-founder of the multi-award winning Urban Vocal Group charity.
‘This guy said it's a new TV show, real good family fun, it’s Saturday night, It's like a guessing game, and we've watched you online for a few weeks.’
‘They said we're looking for good singers and we think you'd be great on it.’
During lockdown, Amba had been doing regular livestreams shows, singing from her own home.
‘I thought about it for a millisecond, and thought this has been a really rubbish year for everyone, and it was like a nice little lifeline in a sad time.
‘It's all about fun, all about laughs and keeping music going, so I was well up for it.’
Alison Hammond, Amanda Holden and Jimmy Carr help the players along the way, with Paddy McGuinness hosting.
As the singing sensations and musical masqueraders navigate through a round of lip sync challenges, clues are given to the celebrity panel who will help the players whittle down the group until there’s only one singer left.
The chosen one will then perform a duet with the popstar to reveal whether they can or can’t sing.
If the players have picked a good singer then they will take the prize – but if a bad singer is revealed, the imposter pockets the cash.
The episode was filmed last November, and because of Covid the participants were kept apart.
‘They were keeping us all from each,’ Amba recalls, ‘so we didn't know who were good singers, who were bad singers, who were contestants, we were ushered into hotels – none of us were allowed to use our real names, we had to go under our persona names.’
Amba was given the name Class Act – a nod to her job as a lecturer at Water Bear College of Music in Brighton.
‘They took onboard that I'm a lecturer and have done loads of teaching with UVG and all that.
‘It's really fun because Jimmy Carr and all those guys are convinced from the start that I'm a primary school music teacher, and then it throws them when they find out I'm a university lecturer.’
The singers all have to lip sync to a song – for the good singers, this is to their own voices. Amba chose We Are Family by Sister Sledge.
‘I got right through to the final two, so I'm on for the full hour, which is great. They're convinced that I'm a good singer, but then it gets down to this other woman, who is called Fashionista, and she's a very cool young, amazing looking popstar-type.’
It comes down to a vote and Amba is eliminated as the ‘bad singer’.
‘Then I had to come forward and sing my “reveal” song, I'm Every Woman, by Whitney, then the penny drops and the colour drains from their faces.
‘They know they've only got one option left and they're praying that she's a good singer – and she was rubbish, so they lost the 10 grand.
‘It’s funny, the bad singers work really hard at it, because they are playing a complete role.
‘When I came off, I could see Fashionista looked so nervous, but when she came forward, she sang so terribly but with so much confidence, it was brilliant.’
And while Amba wasn’t there to win the money, she hopes the show will help give her career a boost.
Well-known on the local scene, she has recently started releasing her own original material.
‘Ultimately it was a great result for me because I got to sing my songs, if I'd gone right to the end I would have sung with Heather Small and that would have been amazing.
‘But off the back of it, the contacts I've made and the friends I've made with other contestants, and the opportunities coming from that alone – and this is before it's aired, so it's been amazing.’
‘I know the show isn't about “my moment”, this isn't X Factor, it's just a really good fun thing to be involved in, but I hope it drives people to hear my original music and look at what else is going on.’
The show is available to watch in the iPlayer here bbc.co.uk/programmes/p08jknt4.
For more about Amba go to ambatremainmusic.com.
A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron
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