Adam Black, Editor
The Ashland Beacon
Bright lights, a big audience and a performance on the paramount stage, could all be just the start for one lucky winner during the Paramount Arts Center’s fall fundraiser.
Residents of the tri-state region have been called upon by the Paramount Arts Center to come and show off their voices as Kentucky Dream Nights Talent Search gives one lucky winner the chance to win it all with a front of the line audition to some of the top TV voice competition shows in America.
“We have such a talented area here in the tri-state and we want to showcase that this Friday and Saturday,” Paramount Arts Center Director, Holly Canfield said. “This is an opportunity like no other.”
Starting Friday at 2 p.m. at the Paramount Arts Center, residents of the tri-state will have the opportunity to participate in open auditions for the official show Saturday at the Paramount. Acts that make it through the audition will then have a whirlwind of a day getting one-on-one mentoring from professional voice coaches, who have worked on the shows and prepare for the main show Saturday evening.
“Currently, we have six people signed up for the competition from our area, but we know there are so many more talented people in our area,” Canfield said.
Contestants who make it through the audition round will then have the chance to compete against talented artists from around the country in hopes of winning the show at the Paramount and getting cash prizes, extensive marketing and a front of the line pass to either the Voice, America’s got talent or American Idol.
“We have people coming from Nashville, California, from all over to compete, but it would be great to have tons of people from our area,” Canfield said. “How great would it be to have another person from this area win.”
Anyone wanting to audition for the competition will be able to from ages nine and up and just need to show up to the Paramount at 2 p.m. Friday. Once registered, contestants will audition with one song of their choice and will be judged by a couple of judges with experience in the field, including Julie Reeves Davis. If they are accepted after the audition round contestants will perform Saturday evening at the Top 20 show at 7 p.m.
Tickets for the event are available. For ticket information, visit the Paramount Arts Centers website.
One hopeful who is looking to get her shot, is Greenup County native Holly Forbes. Many have seen Forbes perform around the tri-state region, including at First Fridays in Downtown Ashland, at Get Fiddled and many other local events.
“I am definitely most looking forward to meeting lots of other musicians and gaining inspiration from them,” Forbes said. “I’m also looking forward to the mentoring and opportunities to grow by others giving real advice. It’s sometimes hard to find knowledgeable people who will be real with you about what you need to do differently in music.”
Forbes explained she is excited about performing on the iconic Paramount Arts Center and getting the opportunity to share her style and genre of music.
“And I’ve never done it as a solo artist,” Forbes said. “It’s a dream of mine, and I cannot accurately express my happiness. It’ll probably be nothing short of a dream come true performing on that stage.”
While Forbes hopes she is the lucky winner, she does have words of encouragement for others hoping to get their big break.
“I would just like to encourage everyone who thinks they would do well in this competition to come audition,” Forbes said. “It’s going to be a truly unique event for this area, and I think it’s going to be beneficial to everyone involved. I’m beyond thankful for the opportunity!”