Hugs and smiles filled the room as family and friends gathered at the Stax Museum Monday night to celebrate with Evvie McKinney, the winner of Fox’s “The Four.”
The Soulsville Academy alumni happily greeted guests, who shared her joy as the first person to win “The Four” competition.
“I’m so happy because I’ve been wanting this so bad for so long,” said McKinney. “This is the best thing that could have ever happened to my family.”
“The Four” premiered in early January. Contestants recorded videos showcasing of theirsinging abilities and performing talent in hopes of being picked to perform in front of Sean “PDiddy” Combs, Meghan Trainor and Dj Khaled. From there, four contestants hit the stage with the judges providing expertise to contestants en route to ultimately finding the next “star” who also is named iHeartRadio’s “On the Verge” artist.
McKinney’s teachers and church members were ecstatic. Her fellow classmates put on a electric performance in her honor. Mayor Jim Strickland was also in attendance.
“We’re just so proud when Memphians go out and represent the city well,” said Strickland. “Evvie definitely made her mark.”
Evvie also expressed how the passing of her late father was her motivation.
“When I lost my father, I was so lost,” said McKinney. “I just prayed and hope he saw what I was doing. I just wanted to make him proud of me, and right now I’m sure he is.”
Maria Parker, McKinney’s mother, said, “I’m just so proud of Evvie. …She’s worked so hard to get to where she is. I knew she would be successful one day.”
So what’s next for the rising star?
“I plan to go back out to Los Angeles to start working with Mr. Combs and Meghan Trainor,” she said. “We plan on working on new material so I can have some great music. Stay tuned.”