NARROMINE-born Sarah Head could be revealed as Australia's next country music sensation at the Tamworth Country Music Festival, being held from January 18 to 27.
She has been announced as one of 15 Toyota Star Maker finalists for 2013 and will now have the chance to compete against a talented pool of Australia's finest emerging country music artists.
If successful, she will join the ranks of country music icons Keith Urban, Samantha McClymont and Lee Kernaghan - all of whom have won the highly-coveted title that helped launch their careers. Since graduating from high school, she has actively pursued a career in the music industry. In 2007, Sarah was a successful graduate of the prestigious Australian College of Country Music. In 2010, she began the recording process, producing a fresh, modern-country EP Girl Like Me that she officially released during the Tamworth Country Music Festival in 2011.
In October 2011, Sarah relocated to the Gold Coast to further pursue her music career.
A previous finalist in 2012, Sarah demonstrated a sincere passion for singing, songwriting and performing country music, and now is more than ready to again showcase her talent on the Toyota Star Maker stage for 2013.
Now in its 34th year, Toyota Star Maker is Australia's biggest and most prestigious country music competition. Taking place in January each year as part of the Tamworth Country Music Festival celebrations, Toyota Star Maker is a launch pad for rising independent country music artists, providing them with the opportunity to realise their dream.
The sheer level of talent seen at every competition is reflected in the fact that in 2013 alone, 16 of the 50 Country Music Association of Australia Golden Guitar finalists are past Star Makers.
2013 marks 20 years of Toyota's support of the Tamworth Country Music Festival and 17 years of sponsoring Star Marker. In a significant change to the traditional format, Toyota Star Maker will be held over two huge nights at the 41st Tamworth Country Music Festival in January.
The fifteen finalists will compete in the main event performing at the Tamworth Regional Entertainment Centre at 7.30pm, Sunday January 20, judged by an industry panel. The four grand finalists will be announced and carried through the festival week to perform as part of the Toyota Concert for Rural Australia from 6.30pm, January 25 at Toyota Park.
For the first time in Star Maker history, fans will have the exciting opportunity to vote for their favourite finalist via SMS during the live event on Sunday, January 20.
The most popular finalist by public vote will be offered one of the four positions in the Toyota Star Maker grand final.
"Toyota has a long and proud history of supporting country music in Australia and this year we are extremely excited to be celebrating 20 years of supporting the Tamworth Country Music Festival,"?Toyota manager events, promotions and Sponsorships Andrew Wearing said.
"Our continued support of country music is our way of giving back to the rural communities who have supported our brand in Australia for over 50 years.
"Toyota Star Maker is a great way to show our commitment and support local talent. It's a fantastic career-launching platform for independent country music artists, and we're very proud to provide this opportunity."
The winner will not only receive an album deal and a big budget recording session with some of Australia's top musicians and producers, but also a huge prize package including a brand new Toyota motor vehicle.
For tickets to the 2013 Toyota Star Maker Finals, please visit www.tcmf.com.au or phone 02 6767 5300.