Teen sensation Mukai Mahachi was the overall winner for the "Sing Your Way to Paris" competition held over the weekend at Alliance Française. She walked away with a trip to Paris and gift hampers from sponsors such as Bon Marche' and a suitcase.
Mahachi (17), a Lower Sixth student at Dominican Convent, beat other 13 finalists at a well attended festival that falls under the two-week-long Francophonie Festival.
The teenager, who was also the crowd's favourite, was part of the top six who also walked away with prizes including a trip to Victoria Falls for the top three.
The top six was dominated by girls, namely Tinatsei Deve, Ruvimbo Mutanhire, Tarisai Mutandwa, Kwekweshiwe Mutambo, Mufaro Mugabe and the winner Mahachi.
However, there was no doubt that Mahachi would emerge a winner because of her energetic performance and she stole the limelight as she brought the Zimbabwean flag on stage while singing which drove the crowd into a frenzy.
In an interview with The Herald Entertainment, Mahachi said she was happy and shocked at the same time.
"Wow, I am so excited and shocked considering the tough competition I had with other finalists. I am really grateful that I am the winner and to represent my country well in Paris," she said.
Mahachi sang "Femme de Couler" by French pop star Shy'm and said music will always be part of her life.
"I thank God for giving me such talent.
"I sang, 'Femme de Couler' which was done Shy'm, who is one of the most successful French singers of the 21st century, with three platinum, including her number one 2012 album, 'Caméléon'. It is a dance song and I believe that I nailed it. Music will always be part of my life," she said.
Shy'm has been well recognised in her country as she had received the NRJ Music Award for Francophone Female Artiste of the Year both in 2012 and 2013.
Mahachi said the song means "Woman of Colour".
"The song advocates for racial tolerance and people should love each other despite race differences. I want to thank my O-Level French teacher who discovered my talent. She said to me, one day that 'Do you want to sing your way to Paris' and I said 'Yes'. I urge my peers not to look back but stay focused," she said.
Award winner Cynthia Mare also put up a scintillating performance as both singer and master of ceremonies.
She performed most of her popular songs such as "Moto Ngaubvire" and "Dai Zvaibvira".
Last year saw another Dominican Convent, 17-year-old Dumisile Mphamba, walking away with the grand prize.
The annual competition is open to youths from 14 to 26 years old and each contestant is required to sing in French.