Talent Show Promises ‘Passion,’ Cash Prizes

September 18, 2008  

By Laura Noble

Simon Cowell may not be in the judge’s seat, but some students are still belting notes, preparing for an experience that may prove just as memorable as any “American Idol” debut.

On Friday at 8 p.m. in SMU’s McFarlin Auditorium, an array of student talent will be showcased at the 33rd Annual Family Weekend Talent Show.

Open to all SMU students and parents, the show’s performances will range from guitar-piano duets to a choir piece from choral group Voices of Inspiration.

Each act secured a spot in the show after an audition last month in front of a panel of three judges. Replacing Randy, Paula and Simon were advertising professor Bill Ford, SMU alumnus Anne Conwell and Student Affairs representative Steve Newcomb.

“I’ve been to several talent shows and have been absolutely amazed by people who didn’t particularly do this as a major but do it for fun,” Ford said. “These guys truly have a passion for their art, and it’s great to see people willing to show case their talent in the performing arts.”

Jose Bowen, Dean of SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts is slated to emcee the two-hour event. Stephanie Markman, vice-president of programming for SMU’s Student Foundation, says Bowen will not be given a script and will have full control over traditional emcee antics.

“One of the acts that auditioned this year is a magician,” said Family Weekend chair Andrew Jones, “I mean, where else can you find that? The Talent Show is a big SMU tradition.”

The performers also will compete for cash prizes. Divided into individual and group categories, the two grand prize winners will leave with $250, the first runner-up with $150 and the second runner-up with $100.

Newcomb, a former entertainment manager for a cruise line, said he finds it rewarding to encourage performers to keep pursuing their talents.

“Having worked with professional talent, now I know I’d much rather help people grow their talent and not lose sight of their passion,” he said. “I wouldn’t miss this.”

Tickets for the Family Weekend show are available for $10 at the Mane Desk in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center and at the McFarlin Auditorium box office starting at 7 p.m. Friday.

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One Response to “Talent Show Promises ‘Passion,’ Cash Prizes”

  1. Susan Kishner on September 18th, 2008 3:20 am

    Great post. I will read your posts frequently. Added you to the RSS reader.