SINGAPORE - Singer Aliff Aziz has won the eighth season of Malaysian television singing show Gegar Vaganza. He is the second Singaporean to win the contest after Hady Mirza was crowned co-winner with Malaysian singer Naqiu in 2019.
Aliff, 30, edged out contestants such as Malaysian singers Nikki Palikat, first runner-up, and Suki Low, who ended up third. He took home RM100,000 (S$32,093) and a trophy.
The finale for Gegar Vaganza, organised by Malaysian broadcast company Astro was broadcast live from the Putrajaya International Convention Centre in Putrajaya on Jan 23.
In a Berita Harian report on the post-show media conference, Aliff said that he was "humbled" by his victory.
"It does not mean I am the best. Maybe my rezeki (blessings or sustenance) is set here and I am grateful and thankful to my mother and father in Singapore, family and the people who prayed for my success."
He added that he is looking forward to working with the other finalists on new projects. "This is a beginning for the new Aliff Aziz," he said.
Aliff made his singing debut at the age of 16, when he was the youngest winner of Anugerah, a reality singing show organised by Mediacorp's Suria.
He is known for hit songs such as Sayang Sayang (Love, 2007) and Tak Ada Cinta Sepertimu (No Love Like Yours, 2014), a duet with Malaysian singer Siti Nordiana.
He also made his name as an actor, taking on roles in drama serials aired on Malaysian broadcasters such as RTM, TV3 and Astro, as well as on local television.
He has made headlines in recent years for his brushes with the law in Singapore.
In Sept 2020, he was sentenced to two weeks' jail and a fine of $500 for theft and an unrelated charge of behaving in a disorderly manner in public.
Now based in Malaysia, he is married to Malaysian singer-actress Bella Astillah. The couple have two children, a four-year-old son and a 18-month-old daughter.
Gegar Vaganza features contestants who are seasoned performers in the Malay entertainment scene.
The show's jury comprises music industry veterans Ramli MS, Hetty Koes Endang and Syafinaz Selamat.
Other past Singapore-born contestants in the show include Ferhad in 2017 and Hetty Sarlene in 2018.
This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.