By Cody Thompson
CROCKETT – It’s that time of the year where students from across Houston County gather to showcase their talents and skills for the Houston County Youth Talent Showcase. This year’s showcase will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 20 at the Crockett Civic Center.
For over 25 years, the Piney Woods Fine Arts Association has sponsored the event as a way to showcase the most talented students in Houston County, a PWFAA press release said.
“We get the best and brightest talent that Houston County has to offer and we give them a chance to perform in a professionally produced production,” PWFAA executive director Glenn Barnhart told the Messenger on Friday. “It gives the students both a chance to perform and an outlet to be creative.”
Besides providing a venue for creativity, the showcase also is a means to help students build confidence, Barnhart said.
“A lot of times, when a student who is shy or reserved gets on stage and is given a chance to perform, it can greatly boost their confidence and sefl-esteem,” Barnhart said. “This confidence will transfer to their day-to-day lives and can help make them better students and better citizens.”
The showcase is open to any student in first through 12th grade in a Houston County school district: Crockett ISD, Kennard ISD, Jordan School / Vista Academy, Latexo ISD, Lovelady ISD and Grapeland ISD.
Auditions for the showcase will be held for all acts, except dancers or dance groups, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, May 7 at the civic center. Dancers and dance groups will audition from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday, May 8 at the civic center.
Performers need to bring all necessary equipment with them to the audition.
“If they’re playing an instrument or in a band, they need to bring the instruments and sound equipment with them. If a performer is singing, they need to bring the accompanying music on a CD, we do not accept music from a phone, iPod or MP3 player,” Barnhart said. “Just bring everything you need with you when you come to audition.”
The judging panel consists of professional artists from across the state.
“All of the judges are professional artists, musicians and what-not that are currently working in their fields,” Barnhart said. “We get them from out of the county because that allows them to be truly non-biased and that greatly benefits the kids.”
One representative from each school district in Houston County will act as a liaison between the PWFAA and their respective districts. This year’s representatives are: Janet Walker (Crockett ISD), Mylinda Cole (Kennard ISD), Don Colasanti (Jordan School / Vista Academy), Rhonda Price (Latexo ISD), Steve Ferguson (Lovelady ISD) and Perry Frank (Grapeland ISD).
“The representative’s job is to help the students get ready for the talent show, whether that’s by helping them sign-up, offering professional advice or just giving them moral support,” Barnhart said.
A sign-up sheet can be found on the PWFAA website, www.pwfaa.org, for auditions. Students must submit their name, phone number, type of act (singing, dancing, etc.) three time-slot requests and a valid email address. A confirmation email will be sent to the address provided upon receipt.
The representatives can assist students from their respective school districts sign-up for the showcase, according to the press release.
For more information about PWFAA or the Houston County Youth Talent Showcase, visit www.pwfaa.org or call 936-544-4276.
Cody Thompson may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.