23 November 1983 (age 33)
Manuelle "Emma" Daumas is a young French songwriter and performer, particularly well known for her participation in Star Academy. Daumas grew up in a family of music lovers and the passion for music led her to write several songs by the age of 12: her parents then allowed her to record her first song Stupid boy. After the piano, she took lessons in guitar, and enrolled at the academy of Villeuneuve-lès-Avignon at the age of 15. She frequently entered contests, in particular Mon Dieu of Édith Piaf: she came in 8th in the Laudun song contest playing one of her own compositions, Dis-moi pourquoi ("Tell me why"), before 700 people.
From this point on, her potential not only as a singer but as a songwriter started to become noticed. At this time, she began to enter the scene by taking part at the galas of Pascal Fallais, her professor at the time, with songs like I'm sorry or Vivre from the musical Notre-Dame de Paris. Three years later, she eventually took first place at the song contest at Laudun.
In 2000, her perseverance paid off and she was able to take part in Graines de stars, the live show by Laurent Boyer: she fulfilled her dream of 12 years. Her performance of Barbra Streisand's "Memory" allowed her to take 4th place. Some started to believe in her; among them was François-Georges, who will later become her manager. However, she waited to complete her literary Baccalauréat so she could be finished with her studies and devote herself to her vocation. Thus Emma continued her vocal training in 2001 and 2002 by taking singing lessons from vocal coach Maguy Vilette, and took guitar courses again for two months, because the musical style of pop rock attracted her. She learned more about the music scene by opening for acts such as Carlos, Éric Colado (comic of southern France), the groups Gold and Émile et Image, Noëlle Perna (a comedian from Nice), at the casino of Juan-les-Pins, but especially Michael Jones with the cabaret Le Rouge-Gorge at Avignon in November 2001, while doing odd jobs to make money. The publicity from the casting for Star Academy 2 will mark the end of a year of rich experiences.
In August 2002, she endeared herself with the public, but not in sufficient measure to defeat the eventual winner Nolwenn Leroy. Nevertheless, she reached the semi-final in the contest, and had the opportunity to sing duets with Serge Lama, Patrick Bruel, Youssou N'Dour and Ray Charles.
Since 2002, Daumas has actively embraced causes in favour of underprivileged or sick children when she became a sponsor of UNICEF. She contributed the song L'or de nos vies for the Fight Aids Monaco charity (against HIV-AIDS)
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