Western Graduate Sarah Botelho (POESY) To Appear on CTV's The Launch

Standing in front of Scott Borchetta, Fergie and Stephan Moccio, Western graduate and singer-songwriter POESY—real name Sarah Botelho—realized the magnitude of auditioning for new hit talent show The Launch.

The Launch is really revamping the way new artists in Canada can be discovered,” said Botelho, 23. “I’ve almost given up on music and myself a lot of times, so to be given the opportunity to be featured in a show of this calibre is an unreal experience for me. I’m actually singing for people in the business who can help me potentially reach a lot more people with my music. And I really do hope it inspires other people to not give up on themselves and what they love.”

The Launch will have six one-hour episodes, each featuring five up-and-comers who are mentored to create a new original song. In Botelho’s episode, airing on Wednesday, January 31st at 9pm, POESY will be featured alongside Ezra Jordan, Faiza, Jaryd Stanley and Sariyah Hines.

Botelho recalled dreaming of being a rockstar as a kid, and the prospect of singing for music industry executives feeling like a faraway dream.

“I remember thinking, ‘I wish we could just call up Universal Records or something and get their executives in a room so I can show them I can do this,’ and feeling so small,” she said.

However, this childhood dream became reality when a Facebook message telling her about the opportunity and urging her to audition convinced her to submit a video of herself detailing why she should be on The Launch to CTV. She submitted the video along with clips of her performing a cover of “Zombie” by the Cranberries and an original unreleased tune.

“At first I was hesitant because I didn’t know much about the show and wasn’t sure what the format was,” she said. “I actually put off doing the application until the last day to submit because I was on the fence about it.”

Glad that she decided to submit her application, Botelho waited two months before receiving a call from the producers—while she was shopping at Giant Tiger—saying she was being brought in to audition.

One of 30 unsigned musicians vying for the opportunity to record and release a single, Botelho was mentored by The Black Eyed Peas’ Fergie. Botelho was a fan of Fergie for years, so singing for her was a surreal experience.

“I cannot tell you how many times I listened to ‘Monkey Business’ as a preteen, and it’s so strange to think that Fergie’s actually heard me sing,” she explained giddily.

By watching The Launch, Botelho noted how audiences will garner a greater understanding of the process of discovering new talent and creating a hit song. Few artists are discovered on their own: most must fight for it.

“It takes years of practice, self-discovery, rejection, and shows played in dingy bars to form a fully realized artist,” she explained.

The Launch carefully selected musicians who write their own music, play instruments, produce songs, and self-manage. From song production to booking their own shows to keeping up their own websites, the artists on the show are multi-talented individuals who work hard to achieve their dreams.

Botelho admitted she was not as excited as one would expect, mostly because she did not believe the show was real. It seemed too good to be true, so she could not process the opportunity until the day before the audition.

“I legitimately thought I would show up on set and there would be no one there, except maybe Ashton Kutcher telling me I’d been punk’d,” Botelho said.

On the audition itself, Botelho could not divulge any details; we will have to wait for the show to air! What she could say, however, was that she “was very blessed to be featured among a group of very unique and talented up-and-coming artists who all bring something different to the table.”

Excited to see a Western Alumni singing on TV? Listen to her EP, ‘The Spotless Mind’, on Spotify here and catch POESY on CTV’s The Launch on Wednesday, January 31st at 9pm.

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