'Wonder kids' show their gifts in 'Waynesboro...You've Got Talent'

April 10, 2010|By KATE S. ALEXANDER
  • Hannah Richardson belts out "I Wanna Be a Rockette" Saturday before a sellout crowd for the first "Waynesboro ...You've Got Talent" competition.
By Kate S. Alexander,

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- Waynesboro Communities that Care (CTC) proved Saturday night that Waynesboro has talent.

Thirty-six students from the area took to the stage for "Waynesboro ... You've Got Talent" to showcase their gifts to a sellout crowd of family and friends.

"I think everyone was awesome," said Hannah Richardson, a home-schooled third-grader.

K. Marilyn Smith, community mobilizer for CTC, orchestrated the event along with the CTC prevention board.

"This is a fun thing to do," she said.

CTC strives to create an environment that encourages youths to become healthy, responsible and productive citizens, Smith said.

Events such as Saturday night's talent competition provide ideal environments for youths to prosper, she said.

"I hope we were able to show you what wonder kids we have in Waynesboro," she said.

The crowd was eager for the more than the 21 acts to take the stage.

While some students performed solo, others formed groups.


Christopher Dennis, principal of Waynesboro Area Senior High School, said the acts were judged based on choice of material, performance ability for their age, overall appeal of the piece, clarity and creativity.

Four judges -- Dennis, Chris Unger, Franklin County Commissioner David Keller and Broadway performer Katrina Yaukey -- ultimately decided who had the most talent in the bunch.

Those who won received medals and trophies, presented by Smith and Caroline Dean, a CTC board member.

Not every performer received an award, and if you ask Hannah, there was more talent on the stage Saturday night than received recognition.

"I think others should have gotten the chance to win," she said.

For those who won, such as Hannah, who took first place in the grades 1 to 5 category, there were many more people than just mom and dad to credit.

"My music teacher, Sal Dupree, he lives in Atlantic City (N.J.)," she said, thanking him. "And Kay Yaukey, she was always nice to me. And one more, my best friend, Sarah Shirk."

Choosing which piece to perform was one of the many challenges for competitors.

Claire Martin, an eighth-grade student, chose "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen.

"I saw some people singing it on YouTube and thought it would fit my voice," she said.

Winning first place in the category with the largest entries, grades 6 to 8, proved Cohen's modern classic fit her voice perfectly.

As for Hannah, choosing which song to sing was a no-brainer.

"It is probably most definitely my favorite song," she said of Alan Menken's "I Wanna Be a Rockette."

Given the sellout crowd and caliber of talent Saturday, Smith said there will be another show in 2011.

The following were the winners of Saturday night's "Waynesboro ... You've Got Talent" competition.

o Grades 1 to 5

First place -- Hannah Richardson

Second place -- Krista Barkdoll

Third place -- Maggie Dennis

o Grades 6 to 8

First place -- Claire Martin

Second place -- Jada Baker

Third place -- Taylor Davis

o Grades 9 to 12

First place -- Missy Ecker

Second place -- Victoria Jackson

Third place -- Caitlin Rowland

o Groups

First place -- A&D Swagger Squad

Second place -- J&L Tumbling

Third place -- WaynesboroFest Chorus

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