For Rappahannock High School senior Karianne Chapman, singing has been a part of her life from a very young age.
She first cultivated for passion for the art at two years old when her mother, Andrea, would sing to her.
Now, singing is almost instinctive for Karianne, the RHS student said with a light laugh. She often catches herself doing it while walking about with her headphones in, or when she’s in the car either by herself or with people.
She has been asked many-a-time by others to sing for them, whether it be in a classroom or at a local business.
And on June 21, Karianne will be singing in front of a large audience in Tappahannock as one of the 10 finalists in the 2014 RivahFest Idol competition.
“I was actually shocked to know that I made it. I was just going to see if I had enough talent to even do it, and then they told me that I made it,” she said. This won’t be the first time that Karianne has performed in front of a crowd; she has four years of chorus under belt and used to sing in church, including small solo parts. Karianne also participated in four to five talent shows over the years.
“Mostly I do it for fun, just to do it,” Karianne said, adding that singing helps to build her confidence.
“I get more comfortable being on stage than I do when I first get on it,” Karianne said. “When I first get on it and I see all those people, I’m like, ‘I don’t know about this,’ but when I start singing, it’s like, I’m not worried about everybody else in the crowd.”
And people have encouraged her talent, Karianne indicated when she recalled how, in her 10th grade Biology classroom, her classmates and even her teacher would ask her to sing for them.
“I was new that year, and they’re like, ‘We know you can sing,’ and I’m like ‘I don’t know,’ and I would, and they’d say, ‘Oh, that’s so good!’ and they’d keep wanting me to sing, and I felt weird singing in the middle of class,” Karianne said.
She also recalled one time where not long after she had walked into her dad’s karate studio, the people there had asked her to sing for them after they learned she had qualified for RivahFest Idol.
“I’m actually really excited,” Karianne said of performing in the competition. “I’m a little nervous, but I think that it will go great, and I’m thrilled to let people know the talent I actually have because I’m actually a shy person.”
Karianne was especially grateful to her mom, Andrea.
“She has been the one who has taught me how to sing,” Karianne said with a smile. “She’s the one who would always say, ‘Sing when you want to be happy, sing with me.’ She’s helped me a lot through everything.”
Following graduation, Karianne plans to attend Rappahannock Community College for two years and major in Psychology before moving to Radford.
“[For] the major that I’m doing, I’m going to be talking to people who have been in the military and have experienced really traumatic experiences,” Karianne said. “I feel like that’s something they don’t get to talk about a lot to people … I think that getting on a one-to-one basis with somebody about that can help them out.”
While she would love to do a career with singing, Karianne said that could be difficult to achieve.
“As of right now, I use it as a hobby, but if it leads me into a career, then I greatly accept that,” Karianne said before adding: “That’s how famous people are found—they just go along with their hobbies.”
Karianne said she likes pretty much anything that comes on the radio; her favorite artists are Adele and Christina Aguilera.
Outside of singing, Karianne loves dancing, acting, swimming and is a big fan of fishing.
Karianne said she felt the prizes for the RivahFest Idol winners were good because “a lot of students are looking for college money to look forward to college.”
“I think that’s the good thing about doing this competition, is if I get anything, it’s going towards a good cause and not just for me to spend on anything,” Karianne said.