Former Stamford High School pupil Izzy Bizu has been named runner up in the Critics’ Choice Award at the 2016 Brits.
The soul singer lost out to multi-instramentalist Jack Garratt in the award, which was announced today (Friday, November 27).
Izzy joins previous prestigious Critics’’ Choice Award runners up including, The Vaccines, Laura Mvula, James Blake and Michael Kiwanuka, all of whom went onto achieve huge success. She hopes to follow in their footsteps when her debut album, A Moment of Madness, is released next year on Epic Records.
Izzy was a pupil at Stamford High School before studying vocals at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute, or Bimm, in London, from which she graduated with a diploma in 2012.
Executive principal at Bimm Vaseema Hamilton said: ““We are thrilled for Izzy. Being nominated for the Brits Critics’’ Choice is a huge achievement and we are looking forward to hearing her debut album”.”
Since being spotted at an open mic night two years ago, Izzy has supported top names such as Sam Smith, Rudimental and Foxes; performed at Glastonbury twice; and made her debut on Later with Jools Holland earlier this year.
And her rise is continuing with her Brit Award nomination.
Earlier this week Izzy said: “I’m so honoured to be nominated for the Brits Critics’ Choice Award this year, following in the footsteps of amazingly talented artists like Adele, Emeli Sande and James Bay, so thank you!
“I grew up watching the Brits on the TV at home so it’s pretty exciting to be a part of it.”
The next Brit Awards take place in February 2016, but the Critics’ Choice Award winner was announced today.
Nominees in the category, along with the ultimate winner, are chosen by an expert panel including heads of music from radio and TV, editors from national newspapers and music magazines.
Izzy, this year’s winner Jack Garratt and pianist-singer Frances were chosen from a list of more than 100 finalists.
Singer-songwriter James Bay won the 2015 award and has gone on to major success this year. His album Chaos and the Calm is the year’s biggest-selling debut and his performance at Glastonbury drew a huge crowd.