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Monday, 16 December, 2002, 10:05 GMT
Your views: Fame Academy finale
Lemar, David and Sinead
The final three competed for viewer's votes
David Sneddon has been voted winner of BBC One's talent search Fame Academy, polling 3.5 million votes out of the 6.9 million cast.

David, 24, beat fellow contestant Sinead Quinn after the pair went head-to-head in Friday's live final.

His prize is a chance to live the life of a celebrity with a luxury flat in Notting Hill for a year, a sports car and a 1m record contract to keep him busy.

Did the finale produce the right outcome? Will his fame last or is he destined to go down the same road as other TV-conceived pop stars such as Hear'Say?

Was Fame Academy better or worse than Pop Idol? What do you think of talent hunts in general?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.

Your reaction

Sinead is totally original and would perfectly fit into the female soloist void in the British music industry

Graeme, Coventry, England
Sinead was amazing in the final and was noticeably better than David or Lemar on the night. David is the classic pop idol all the young girls want, and the public got what they wanted. I just hope a record company snatches Sinead up, it would be a shame for that immense talent to be wasted. She is totally original and would perfectly fit into the female soloist void in the British music industry.
Graeme, Coventry, England

I loved Fame Academy and I say good luck to David. I would have liked Sinead to win as well but I am happy with the result
Rebecca, England

I was never a fan of Popstars, but Fame Academy has to be an inspiration to all young hopefuls. On the day, from the performances given by all three finalists David was the one who put his heart into everything, Sinead lost tune so many times and think Lamar was over confident about his abilities. Being in my 50s I have seen the music industry develop through the years and the one thing that is required is the ability to sing live and stay in tune - Sir Cliff is a good example of this. So good luck to you David, and to the rest of the finalists, your day is just around the corner so keep at it.
Maureen Hitchen, Cheshire, UK

Pop music does not feature in my life although listening to music all day does. I 'dipped' into Fame Academy at times and watched the last 30 minutes of the final. For sheer voice quality David had it all. I could listen to his voice without ever getting tired of it. Sinead although full of personality, was far from pitch perfect and the songs had a 'belt it to them' feeling. I would soon tire of listening to her. For me David was a clear winner when it came to real singing ability.
Eileen, England

A bit of fun but don't call it music. A waste of licence money.
Ian Dennis, UK

He is the smiley, good looking pop star with text book commercial songs

Lorraine, England
Although he undoubtedly has talent, I feel it was a shame for the Fame Academy that David won. He is the smiley, good looking pop star with text book commercial songs. The inclusion of talent such as Lemar, Sinead, Ainslie and Malachi showed that the BBC wanted to introduce "alternative" acts to the reality TV format. Shame that the voting British public couldn't see the possibility of choosing something different as a winner!!
Lorraine, England

Great to see talented individuals being given a chance. The reality of the pop industry and how recording contracts are dealt out is that they usually have got nothing to do with talent or song writing skills, which is an accusation that can't be levelled at any of the three finalists.
AJ, Wales

The role of the teachers in Fame Academy should not be overlooked. Each of the students developed in noticeable ways, and David Sneddon seemed to make the longest journey of the three finalists. Carrie Grant ultimately seemed not only to provide excellent coaching for voice, but also for life. This is an aspect completely missing from the "pop" shows on "the other side". Now Steve Lillywhite (album producer) has the potential to make the same kind of difference that Carrie Grant (and the other "teachers") did. Given his wide-ranging background, he looks to be a good choice. Only time will tell!
David, Scotland

We were trying to vote for Sinead all night but about 15-20mins before the lines closed the Sinead one stopped working but the David one was working until the end. It was not just us, lots of our friends couldn't get through and they live all over Northern Ireland! It seems to have been rigged from our point of view as the message said the Sinead line was closed but when we rang David's up it said thanks for your vote and was active until the line closed officially. With 1,000 votes in it, Sinead was probably the winner if her line had stayed open and all of Northern Ireland were voting!
Jane McQuillan, Belfast, NI

All three will probably get a contract anyway, so is it worth complaining about who won?

Vicky, Scotland
I enjoyed David and Lemar's performances, but Sinead was overrated as a performer (good original song, though). Not everyone is ever going to be happy with the way things turn out when the vote is put to the public, but all three will probably get a contract anyway, so is it worth complaining about who won? I tried to vote for David, and had the same problem that Jane from Belfast had with Sinead's voting line. And the difference in votes was 100,000, not 1,000, Jane!
Vicky, Scotland

David was my favourite from the start. I was really disappointed when he didn't make it in the Acadamy. I'm glad he got another chance. I was so happy for him to win. He's great. Please release the single in Europe as well. It's a great song. I hope to see and hear David perform for a long time.
Cora, The Netherlands

Well done to the BBC/Endermol. We've watched from day one and loved the series. Already looking forward (and hoping for) a second commission. Interactive feeds, coverage on BBC 1 and BBC Choice - what more could I have asked for.
Iain Chapman, UK

Hopefully we will now see David go on to be the next Elton or Lennon

Dave Roman, UK
Good to see thee BBC using this story as a front page headline. This is news. Hopefully we will now see David go on to be the next Elton or Lennon. What a hero. Not only has he got near perfect pitch but he smiles all the time. He's like a ray of sunshine brightening up a gloomy winter. Beautiful.
Dave Roman, UK

I can't believe David won the contest. Every single poll or statement I have heard or seen had Sinead as the favourite - until the last day when the bookies suddenly changed and went for David. His arrogance in winning coupled with his lack of consideration for the losers singled him out as cold, indifferent and truly ghastly. My wife is convinced the whole show has been a fix - right up from when he joined the show as a stand-in to last night's mockery of a contest. I agree with my wife - the whole thing looks as if it was rigged.
Gordon Kilduff, UK

From the beginning of the series I have been a fan of David, so good luck and I hope we can watch you soon on television in Belgium.
Nele, Belgium

I only started watching it about four weeks ago, but was instantly hooked. It's so refreshing to see people there because of their all round talent, not just because they're pretty. Our favourite was David - my 9 year old daughter loves him - so we're chuffed at the result, but I'll be disappointed if this is the last we hear of Ainslie!
Susan Liddell, Scotland

It should not have been decided by Joe Public

Natalie Celik, UK
I didn't really get into it or any of the shows since Popstars, however, I did see quite a few of the performances towards the end of the programme. I must say the best singer beyond a shadow of a doubt was Lemar closely followed by Sinead. Unfortunately I didn't watch it enough to see the skills of David's song writing but I thought this win was for a record deal. Lemar should have won and it should not have been decided by Joe Public. The judges seemed to know what they were talking about and would not have picked David for the winner. I hope Lemar and Sinead get a record deal anyway out of this and that will show who will last!
Natalie Celik, UK

I am so glad that David won, he was by far the best contender!
Wendy, Scotland

I am disappointed that David won (of course not for him) because he doesn't represent anything new in music - he is a 'pretty' face with an acceptable voice, but he won't last because there is nothing unique there.

I think this has been a lost opportunity to promote something new in British music - perhaps a more adventurous Fame Academy could be launched?
K Day, UK

I was very dubious when it started, with having Popstars the previous year. However I warmed to its highly constructive format and really became an avid viewer weeks into the programme.

Pointless, pop, pap

Ed Motler
I would be very surprised and interested in anyone suggesting Fame Academy being inferior to Popstars. Here we have seen week after week genuine talent - sometimes raw, sometimes sublime, but always totally entertaining.

I will genuinely miss these performers especially Ainslie, Lemar and Sinead in that order. I only hope all are snapped up by record companies. Very well done BBC.
Richard Parks, UK

Pointless, pop, pap. If you watched the shows none of them can sing or compose to the degree that is required by hardworking bands and singers to get a record contract.

The increase in viewers, towards the programme's death, is down to television 'rubber-necking' by the public.

Of course the BBC are not planning a second series, they may be proud but they are not stupid once stung. I would like to say something positive but I just can't, the whole series has been tripe and the people selected are hopeless wannabes. BBC where did it all go wrong?
Ed Motler, L/Spa, UK

Loved it! Brilliant format. Great way to discover new talent instead of mediocre flash-in-the-pan bands.
Ken, Malaysian

The fact that the students have been allowed to develop things like songwriting has been a refreshing change from shows like Popstars and Pop Idol.

The fact that the students have been allowed to develop things like songwriting has been a refreshing change

Tony H
I hope there's another series, as I've absolutely loved this one! The live feed via BBCi in particular has been compelling.

Things haven't been absolutely perfect with the Tues/Thu shows and Fri showdowns, but nevertheless, BBC have provided us with great entertainment as well as five or more new faces.

Maybe next time you could have the superb Saturday night acoustic sessions featured more heavily? I'm assuming (hoping!) there will be a second series...
Tony H, UK

Jon Calway, UK

Maybe we can have a new format - call it MP-Idol - the winner is the one who lies, cheats and cons his way to the top and then gets to be prime minister for a week - it can't be any worse than the endless reality drivel that has taken over our screens.
Rob Marshall, UK

I wanted Sinead to win all along but I thought David's original song was outstanding so I can't grumble about him winning.

Lemar was just in a league of his own

My only concern is that we have more than enough young male ballad singers, but not enough young female songwriters, which is why Sinead was my favourite.
Andrew Smith, Scotland

Who pays to put on shows such as Fame Academy and for the very generous prizes? Is it the BBC licence payer?

Do the record companies who will ultimately be the main beneficiaries contribute?
John, UK

Fame Academy is a much more well thought programme than Popstars. It gives you an insight into who they actually are as a person, something Popstars fails to do.

I'd like to congratulate Cat Deeley and Patrick Kielty for actually keeping things going smoothly despite how hectic it looked at some points. Great show, deserved an even bigger audience.
Martin Bunker, UK

Over the 10 weeks the series has had its critics, of which I have been one, but at the end of the day there has been some real talent uncovered as a result of this show and for that reason alone we must keep on with such shows.

There must surely have been 8 or 9 million people watching the final, now does that really suggest that reality TV has had it's day? I think not.
Christopher Neave, UK

I'm quite glad that David won, although I thought Lemar had the best vocal ability. I felt far more involved in Pop Idol for some reason, and think that Will has a far better voice and more charisma than David.

At the end of the day there has been some real talent uncovered

Christopher Neave
A combination of Will's voice and David's songwriting ability would be formidable. I wish them both luck with their careers and hope that the media don't now put the knife into those chosen by the public as their winners.
Maggie, UK

I and my partner got completely hooked and thoroughly enjoyed the trials and tribulations of Fame. Really pleased that David won. He had a great voice with almost perfect pitch, and obvious song writing talent. Look forward to hearing him more in the future. We are two ageing rockers!!!
Jane Harcombe, UK

An utter abomination from beginning to end; a dreadful cynical marketing ploy, a case of the terminally stupid leading the hopelessly untalented. Hang your heads in shame....
Gary T, England

I loved Fame Academy, I thought the talent was amazing in there but Lemar was just brilliant. I am happy for David, he was also a favourite of mine, but Lemar was just in a league of his own. I will miss Fame Academy a lot!
Tina , UK

Really pleased that David won - he had a great voice with almost perfect pitch

Jane Harcombe
It's not news - stop reporting it as if it were. It's no more than TV tat for the masses whose minds have already been numbed by the increasing amount of rubbish on television and the press. TV needs an injection of reality, not more reality TV.
Paul Davies, UK

Well it started off comically bad, not one right note all evening. I didn't then watch it for a few weeks but then I really started to enjoy it, and became addicted near the end. I'm very glad David one, he deserved it. I also hope Ainslie gets a record contract!
James Smith, England

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