Ten-year-old Mukhammedali Zhugunussov won the professional vocalist award at the 2014 Paradise Holiday international competition held in late April. The best vocalists from 10 countries participated.
Zhugunussov grew up in a creative environment. His mother is an actress who works for the Kalibek Kuanyshbayev Kazakh Drama Theatre, and his father is a producer. Zhugunussov started studying music at the age of six. His first vocal teacher was his mother. His older brother Rustem Zhugunussov is a finalist on the show X-Factor.
Aiym Samekeyeva, 13, won another gold for Kazakhstan. She won first prize at the Spring Voices international vocal competition in China, which was held from April 30 to May 5. The competition was attended by children from more than 30 countries. Selection standards were very stringent; many participants were eliminated before the finals.
Samekeyeva won the hearts of the international jury and their standing ovation on the very first day. The young vocalist has successfully performed at various music competitions. She was the winner of the international festival Jizerské Beads 2008 in Macedonia and won first prize at the 2009 Silver Dolphin international children’s competition in Greece.
Zhugunussov and Samekeyeva are winners of the second Almaly.kz International Children’s Art Festival, which was held in Almaty from March 20 to 24.