Cousins turn rivals in hunt for The Voice
THESE cousins and best friends were pitted against each other as they competed for a place on hit talent series The Voice.
Dubliners Claire O'Loughlin and Olivia Luc say they are like sisters and even sing together in wedding band Blush.
The stunning young mums decided to enter The Voice together but their competitive streak emerged when they went almost face-to-face for a place in the next round.
"Our family is like the Von Trapps. Any time we get together, we sit around with guitars, pianos and sing," said Claire.
After their performances, the cousins had to wait in the green room and nervously watch the other's audition and how the judges reacted.
Claire (30) was working in the legal and industrial relations department of the INTO when she decided to give up her job to follow her passion for music.
The girls' uncle encouraged them to form a band and they have been booked up regularly ever since.
The Castleknock native said: "I went for X Factor years ago and I've been through these things before. I had no expectations for this.
"When I'm nervous my voice cracks and breaks in front of people."
However, Claire, who has two children Luca (4) and Sophie (1), said the grounding of singing in a wedding choir and band gave her the confidence to apply to another show.
Her cousin Olivia (34) was also encouraged to take the plunge.
The mum-of-four said that this was her first talent audition and found it a nerve-wracking experience.
"I thought it would be great for a stranger to judge my voice," she said.
"The first time I got a call back made me realise that I may have 'a voice'."
Olivia, who is married with three children -- Chloe (16), Ciara (15), Eoin (11) and Aoife (5) -- works in drug addiction with high dependence clients but earns her crust from work with Blush.
Tune in to The Voice on RTE on Sunday to see which, if any of the judges, decide to take on Claire and/or Olivia.