From cute country kid to Idol star

Kate Cook
Kate Cook

FROM backyard performances for her family as a child to her time as a country rocking Australian Idol hopeful, Kate Cook has kept one thing the same - her big beaming smile.

Some fans might consider Ms Cook's akubra as her trademark, but for proud sister Paula Stone, it has to be her ever-present grin.

“As a kid she always had a big smile on her face, and it's a very contagious smile,” she said.

“She approaches life and takes on challenges with a smile, and that hasn't changed with Idol.

“She's enjoying the challenges that are thrown up each week and is making sure she is enjoying the extraordinary opportunity she has.”

This Sunday's episode of Australian Idol has a big band theme, with Ms Cook busy preparing to take on the old standard Hit The Road Jack.

After blitzing the competition early, Ms Cook was criticised by the Australian Idol judges - Ian “Dicko” Dickson, Marcia Hines and Jay Dee Springbett - for her last two performances.

Judges said her performances on '80s night and Pink night were flat compared to her previous efforts - and Dicko called for the old Kate to come back.

Ms Stone said she was confident he sister would bring back the energy and her charismatic smile to really wow judges this weekend.

“The judges said they want the spark back and I think she'll deliver,” she said.

“She's really looking forward to big band week. She's trying to embrace each theme week and stay true to her roots.

“At the moment she is taking it week by week and trying not to get too far ahead of herself.”

So far, this approach seems to be working, with Ms Cook managing to avoid the Australian Idol bottom three every week.

Although the weekly performances are being held in Sydney, Ms Stone said at least one member of the family made it down each week.

“We'd be there all the time if we could, but we'll always have someone down there giving her support,” she said.

Ms Cook will find out if she has made it through to the next round of the competition at the start of this Sunday's show at 7.30pm on Channel Ten.

Voting lines open soon after the show starts, so to vote for Ms Cook, send “Kate” in a text message to 190 10 10.

Big band legend Harry Connick Jr will be the special guest on the show this week.

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