Christoff as Luc Steeno (1991)
Schlager singer Christoff De Bolle (46) was only a youngster of 15 when his mother sent a video cassette to VTM. He was promptly invited to perform on the broadcasts, but which artist would he choose? “I was a huge fan of Will Tura and Luc Steeno as a teenager. Because the physical resemblance to Luc Steeno was more obvious, I chose to imitate him.”
No sooner said than done. With the number For you Christoff had to settle for fourth place – that year Danny Supply won with Unchained melody -, but he ended up having the last laugh. Shortly after his participation he released his first single, thirty years later he is still one of the busiest artists in Flanders.
Kathleen Aerts as Pop in Wonderland (1995) & Middle of the Road (1997)
Kathleen Aerts (44), the first blonde singer of K3, made her television debut in 1995 as ‘the fiftieth and very last candidate of the season’. Even then, Aerts, who still had brown hair, was on stage with a group. After all, she and her school friends brought the song Grow a baby by the Belgian pop group Pop in Wonderland. They eventually finished in third place.
Two years later she made her appearance again in the program, this time with Chirpy chirpy cheep cheep from the Scottish Middle of the Road. She failed in the semi-finals, but her career was off to a flying start. Not only did she get a role in the first Studio 100 musical Snow White, behind the scenes of television land, she also met Niels William, the man who would set up K3 not much later. The rest is history.
Gary Hagger as René Froger (1990 & 1994)
Gary Hagger (59) – né Gert Vanderhaege – also took his chance twice The sound mix show, but twice as the same artist. He imitated René Froger, the Dutch singer behind Everything can make a person happy. In 1990, when he was not yet performing under his stage name, he performed the song for VTM viewers Winter in America.
His first participation passed rather quietly, but his second in 1995 was a bull’s eye. With its cover of This is the moment he finished in second place. Then became The most beautiful, a Dutch translation of the song, a big hit. That it was subsequently used in the opening credits of the VTM programme The most beautiful momentcompleted the circle.
Yasmine as Evita (1989)
In the very first season, the then seventeen-year-old Yasmine, then still as Hilde Rens, took part in the competition. She already had some experience in television, having also appeared in The now or never show. She brought – after a long search and thinking about the suitable number – Don’t cry for me Argentina from the musical Evita.
She did not win, but it also meant the start of her television career for her. She also experienced her baptism of fire as a presenter on VTM, alongside Willy Sommers Ten to see. Later she switched to the VRT, where she has programs like So there is only one and The Red carpet presented.
Lisa del Bo as Vaya Con Dios (1990)
When Reinhilde Goossens, alias Lisa del Bo (61), took part in the second season of The sound mix show, she and her husband Jos had only one thing in mind. “A stereo system. All finalists got one, and we didn’t have that yet,” she admitted a while ago First. She would end up getting a lot more than a stereo as her rendition of What’s a woman from Vaya Con Dios gave her the win.
Suddenly her whole life turned upside down. After all, three years after her win, she took part in the preselections of the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time, although she would not be selected until her second participation in 1996 with Love is a card game.
Gene Thomas as Michael Hutchence from INXS (1990) & Gunther Levi as Sam Gooris
In the season won by Lisa del Bo, a very young Gunther ‘Gene’ Thomas (now 50) also appeared. The seventeen-year-old who would become known with the dance group X-Session and would later go solo, took his first steps in the media as an impersonator of Michael Hutchence, the singer of the rock band INXS. He brought their hit Never tear us apart.
Romeo Gunther Levi (46) also made his first jumps – literally – in the program in the early 90s, with a cover of Sam Gooris’ Out together, home together.