ARKANSAS CITY, Kansas – The state is known for the singers who have had tremendous success on the hit NBC show “The Voice”, but for 14-year-old Italia Perez, she’s chasing the same dream on the show’s Spanish equivalent.
Called “La Voz Kids”, the Telemundo show is just like the NBC show, with the main differences being the language and the contestants, who are kids age 7 to 15.
Perez’ journey to the show began a few years ago performing with her brothers.
“My brother and I, we were practicing for a talent show, and he was like, ‘You should sing a song,'” Perez said. “So I sang Adele’s ‘Someone Like You’, and that was when I found my voice.”
Italia gets her vocal talent from her mother, Naomi Sanchez, who was also a singer herself, and took Italia to the auditions, including the blind auditions held in Orlando, Fla.
“She sings amazing,” Sanchez said. “She has all the bravery, the courage that I didn’t have, so when I do see her sing, when I was there the whole entire time, I cried.”
Born and raised here in Kansas, Perez says she got lots of questions from the other kids about where she’s from. Some of the other contestants are originally from other countries, like Mexico and Colombia. She says the experience helped her make lifelong friends and will hopefully open the door to a vocal career.
“It just really inspired me,” Perez said. “Since I did that, I feel like I can do better, so I want to just keep trying singing so I can get better and better each time.”
“La Voz Kids” airs Sundays at 7 p.m. on our sister station, Telemundo Kansas, channel 11.