Hundreds of people turned out to watch the 39th annual “Spotlight on Talent” Performing Arts Competition, which allows young performers to showcase their skills and be evaluated by professional judges.
The event was held on March 12 at the Center for the Arts at Wesley Chapel High.
Over the years, the competition has become so popular that it has two final shows.
Younger students performed in the matinee, which began at noon and older students and groups perform in the evening show, which began at 7 p.m.
In total, about 110 contestants performed during the two shows, which is staged each year by the non-profit Heritage Arts Center Association.
The association’s 15-member board worked on the competition for three months, with a final production team including 14 additional community friends who gave of their time, according to a news release from the Heritage Arts Center Association.
Barbara Friedman was the competition’s executive director and assistant producers were Lauretta Brown, Michael Roberts, Michelle Twitmyer and Laurel Weightman.
The event was supported by 37 corporate and community sponsors who donated toward the $4,000-plus in cash prizes, trophies and ribbons that were awarded, plus costs of the show, topping $16,000.
Masters of Ceremonies for the event were David West, a Rotarian and a pastor, and Clint Roberson, a lawyer.
The shows were dedicated to the memory of the late Dr. Jack McTague, a board member of the Heritage Arts Center Association.
Diverse talents were demonstrated during the two shows, including vocal, piano, dance, musical theater, electric, rock and classical guitar and spoken poetry.
One of the high points of the evening came when the winner of the 10th Pasco Heritage Scholarship was announced. Faith Phaller, a dancer, was named this year’s winner of the $1,000 scholarship which goes to a Pasco County graduating senior who attains the highest solo scores from the finals judges, as well as from the audition judges.
Here’s the listing of the 2022 Spotlight on Talent winners:
- First: Naomi Reed , piano
- Second: Kaiya Bistany-Charles, vocal
- Third: Amber Luu, piano
- Fourth: Berkley Hopper, vocal
- Fifth: Chloe Adams, modern/acro dance
- First: Alexander Butts, contemporary dance
- Second: Nikki Lang, piano
- Third: Camila Trejos, vocal
- Fourth: Kat Baudoin, vocal/electric guitar
- Fifth: Abbey Yokum , contemporary dance
- First: Kendall Hill, vocal
- Second: Rio Ricardo, musical theater
- Third: Tavin Groomes, musical theater
- First: Camila Arguello and Linley Bishop, jazz dance
- Second: Stagelights PAC, contemporary dance
- First: Shreyashi Bodaka, piano
- Second: Maelee Scaglione, contemporary dance
- Third: Maris Willers, ballet dance
- Fourth: Sofia Acosta, musical theater
- First: Samuel Wu, piano
- Second: Larkin Mainwaring, vocal
- Third: Brooke Tudor, ballet dance
- Fourth: Jasmine Crew, modern dance
- Fifth: Katie Young, vocal
- Sixth: Julianne Henderson, vocal
- First: Ezekiel Richards, tap dance
- Second: Faith Phaller – ballet/point dance
- Third: Sailor Wade, ballet dance
- Fourth: Jayden Parsons, vocal
- Fifth: Michaela Mezzei – lyrical dance
- First: Kasey Lang and Conner Harrie, piano duet
- Second: Star Company, dance
Pasco Heritage Scholarship Award recipient: Faith Phaller – ballet/pointe dance
Published April 06, 2022