Belfast Telegraph

BGT judge Cowell bowled over by Armagh ninja princess Jesse Jane McParland

Britain’s Got Talent boss, Simon Cowell really got a kick out of the martial arts magnificence of young Jesse Jane McParland from County Armagh on Saturday night.

By John McGurk

Hard-to-please judge Simon Cowell was so impressed by the ‘fast and furious’ skills of the nine-year-old that he quipped “Do you want a job as my security guard?”

Mild and meek looking Jesse Jane from Keady, left Cowell and co open mouthed in amazement after a series of rotations, somersaults, back flips, lightning legged kicks and Samurai sword swings on the second show of Britain’s Got Talent last night.

Her incredibly precise routine, executed at breakneck speed, provoked a standing ovation from the judges and the audience at her audition held in Birmingham — and a huge hug afterwards from her farmer dad, Gary.

The pupil at Our Lady’s and St Mochua’s Primary School in Derrynoose had judge Alesha Dixon praising her as “unbelievable” and “really really special”.

The glamorous pop singer even predicted: “You are one to watch in this competition”.

Speaking to Sunday Life, super proud mum, Sinead said that Jesse Jane — nicknamed JJ — had been particularly determined to impress Simon Cowell at her audition.


“She went to see One Direction last year. She knows that Simon Cowell is One Direction’s boss.

“She is very much into knowing who is in charge and that is the reason why she wanted to impress him.”

Full-time mum Sinead said that JJ had shown a tomboy streak when she ditched ballet lessons and took up the martial art of Taekwondo at the tender age of three.

She said: “She is my first born. I wanted a pretty wee girl in a princess dress, but she had other ideas. She said to me ‘Mommy, not every wee girl wants to be a princess’!

“Now she really wants to get to the Olympics.

“She trains every morning before she goes to school and at the KFMA gym in Dungiven.”

Sinead added that JJ is a current double WAKO Junior World Champion but still manages to find time to do her homework and indulge in her passion for reading.

“She is the most humble, most easy-going child.

“When you see her off the (martial arts) mat, you would say, ‘That is a different child’.

“But she really has a passion for martial arts. She just loves it.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph