Out but not down.
Singapore singer Kit Chan was today counting the bountiful and unexpected returns she said she had reaped from her foray into I Am A Singer 3, despite being eliminated twice from competition rounds of the TV singing contest.
It was like planting a willow branch casually and getting unexpected shade, she said in a statement, using a Chinese saying.
In a breakout round that aired in China last Friday night, she had charmed with her jazzy version of Leslie Cheung's Left, Right Hands, but still did not secure a ticket to the final of the Hunan TV show, said Chinese reports.
Stars who had been eliminated in early episodes - including Chan, Hong Kong's Leo Ku and China's Anson Hu - vied for a place in the final with singers who had not done well the previous week. They were China's Li Jian, South Korea's The One and Taiwan's Ricky Hsiao Huang-chi.
Li won the breakout round, said NetEase website. He sang the Mandarin version of the theme song of the 2003 Korean weepie, The Classic.
Chan, 42, was first eliminated from the show in January.
"I'm totally relieved," she said of the end of her sojourn in the contest, saying she could now happily concentrate on her solo concert in Singapore in June.
She pointed out that she had never deliberately set out to break into the Chinese market. But via the show, she unexpectedly came to know many good Chinese singers and music lovers, she said.
I Am A Singer 3 was a journey which, on a very personal level, affirmed her determination and the choices she has made in her own music, she concluded.
She had wowed some Chinese fans in January, and last Friday, some were not disappointed.
"She finally performs, and sang Leslie's song so beautifully," wrote a fan online, as quoted by Sina.com.
But her performance of a Cantonese song, just like Ku who sang Cantopop legend Jacky Cheung's Love Is Eternal, had some wondering if the choice doomed her chances to enter the finals.
"Do Cantonese songs have no commercial value? Both Kit and Leo couldn't break through," groused a fan quoted by Sina.com.
Meanwhile, with her Spellbound concert coming up at The Star Theatre, Chan's local fans such as Ms Ow Kim Kit are cheering for her despite her double loss in the contest.
"She's probably not in the same league as the rest of the singers in the contest, in terms of popularity," said the 39-year-old lawyer.
"She's not the 'pop idol' kind; she has substance and is not reliant on packaging as a singer. She follows her heart and I respect her artistic integrity. She does try to widen her appeal. For example, she doesn't just sing emotional songs. She has also performed songs like those by other singers like Jacky Cheung."
Hu, The One and Chinese singer Tan Weiwei also secured places in the final on Friday, where they will meet Chinese stars Sun Nan and Han Hong, and Taiwanese singer A-lin.