December 08, 2011 1:14pm PT by Sophie Schillaci
Radio Disney's 'Next BIG Thing Winner' Congratulated By Cody Simpson, Network Execs
Radio Disney named their Next BIG Thing on Wednesday, Dec. 7 during the live finale concert at The Americana at Brand in Glendale, CA. Teen pop star Cody Simpson was on hand for the show, as winner Shealeigh defeated runner-up, Zack Montana.
Shealeigh was in good company for her big moment. Above, the singer-songwriter from Chicago, IL is congratulated by Simpson, N.B.T. host Jake Whetter and several Disney execs. From left to right: Sean Cocchia (senior vice president, business operations and general manager, Disney Channels worldwide), Kelly Edwards (executive director, music & programming, Radio Disney), Phil Guerini (vice president, marketing, Radio Disney), Shealeigh, Simpson, Whetter and Ray De La Garza (vice president, programming, Radio Disney.)
According to her website, Shealeigh previously performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in October 2010, where she sang “Shark in the Water.” While on the Disney competition program, Shealeigh featured two of her original songs, titled “What Can I Say” and “Spotlight.”
“My first passion is writing and singing music but I also love to blog and write poetry!” she says on her website. “Right now I’m trying to learn guitar and play the piano and it’s so much fun!”
Asked which artists she keeps on her iPod, Shealeigh answers: “A whole lot of Taylor Swift, Beyonce, Adele, Death Cab For Cutie [and] Ingrid Michaelson.”
N.B.T. is a 10-week musical competition featuring five young singers or groups who perform singles that the public can then vote on online. Disney Channel also presented previews of each artist. Plus, songs and videos were featured on RadioDisney.com, Disney.com, the N.B.T. mobile website and YouTube.