On this week’s episode of The Launch (Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on CTV), five of this season’s youngest artists auditioned for the mentors to fight for the chance to launch their song. Showcasing a voice and professional demeanour well beyond his years, this week’s launched artist was 13-year-old Ethan Young.
For this week’s episode of The Launch, executive producer Scott Borchetta was joined once again by producer and composer Stephan Moccio. Appearing for the first time on The Launch were mentors Boy George and Alessia Cara, who were both key elements in helping this week’s singers strike the right balance on stage.
Toronto’s Victoria Azevedo and Raymond Salgado of Lantzville, B.C. impressed the mentors with their voices, but weren’t the right fit for this week’s original track “Giants.” The mentors also fell in love with Forest, Ont. solo artist Elequen, but wanted to see her develop as an artist more before hitting the recording studio.
That left 18-year-old Grace Bakker and 13-year-old Ethan Young, both of Toronto, to record and perform the original track “Giants.” With the two young artists giving impassioned and impressive performances, both in the recording booth and in their live performances, it was a difficult decision for the mentors, but Ethan’s incredible pop version of “Giants” was enough to get the young singer launched.
Here are just a few of the times Ethan proved that his age was simply just a number.
WHEN HE AUDITIONED WITH ‘RISE UP’
Throughout this season of The Launch we’ve seen singers take on huge songs for their auditions, but a 13-year-old performing Grammy-nominee Andra Day’s huge ballad “Rise Up” seemed like the tallest order yet. Of course, that was before we heard Ethan’s incredible voice.
WHEN HE REVEALED HE’S BEEN A PRO FOR FOUR YEARS
While many aspiring singers struggle to get gigs, Ethan Young has been working as a professional performer for four years. That’s one third of his life, and he’s not even in high school yet. Joining the Mini Pop Kids group when he was nine, Ethan performed throughout Ontario and recorded an album with the group that sold internationally. Okay, consider us impressed.
WHEN HE WAS COMPARED TO A YOUNG BIEBER
Following his audition, a stunned Stephan Moccio said to Ethan “You have absolutely a sweet voice and there’s a pureness to that tone. Of course, it reminds me of a young Bieber.” Let’s not forget, Bieber also started in the music industry in his early teens and is now one of the biggest pop stars of all time. Go Ethan!
WHEN HE NAILED HIS RECORDING SESSION
“One of the concerns we have about Ethan is whether he can really pull this song off,” said Scott, who voiced his worries at the start of Ethan’s recording session. “He’s only 13 and we’re throwing him right into the deep end.” Of course, we all saw that Ethan could swim, finishing “Giants” in record time and nailing every take.
WHEN HE LEFT ALESSIA CARA SPEECHLESS
Having not seen Ethan’s audition, Alessia didn’t know what to expect when she first met the young singer in the recording studio. Cara quickly found herself receiving a crash course in Ethan. Her notes were as follows: “Wow! Yeah! Yes!” So yeah, it was love at first listen.
WHEN HE STUNNED BOY GEORGE
Throughout the 48 hours, Boy George was continually concerned about whether someone as young as Ethan could stand on stage in front of a live audience and deliver an emotional performance. By the last note of “Giants,” the British icon had his answer. “He’s pretty good there, isn’t he?” said Boy George. “He’s pretty good.” Pretty good, indeed.
Missed the show? You can watch the entire episode right here, or see an extended director’s cut on CraveTV. The Launch is back next Wednesday on CTV at 9 p.m. ET with a special finale episode that will showcase how much the lives of the six launched artists from Season 1 have changed since appearing on The Launch.