ST. GEORGE – For two nights the audience of Dixie’s Got Talent were exposed to some of the best talent southern Utah has to offer.
On Tuesday and Wednesday night, Jan. 24 and 25, audiences gathered at the Cox Auditorium at Dixie State College to watch as 15 performers were whittled down to six the first night. The next night determined who would walk away as the winners.
Karl Lamar cohosted the event with Marilyn Monson, who also helped found Dixie’s got Talent in 2010.
“It was electric,” Lamar said of the Tuesday performance. “There was a lot of great talent. The talent was very honed, very skilled. We saw some incredible performances.”
As the night progressed, the judges and audience voted on the two top finalists in each category, which included youth, young adult, and adult.
Pianist Ryan Gubler led the youth category with his rendition of Chopin’s Étude. He cited both classical and modern artists as influencing his musical style and saiod his piano teacher encouraged him to try out for Dixie’s Got Talent.
Following Gubler was Lauren Cain, who performed another piano piece, “Suggestion Diabolique,” by Sergei Prokofiev.
Next were the young adults – eleventh grader Sabrina Parry, who performed Mozart’s Violin Concerto No.5, and pianist Gregory Anderson followed after Parry.
“I love competitions and playing the piano for people,” Anderson said. “My biggest inspiration is my wife. She encourages me in everything I do.”
Opera singer Amy Nielsen, dressed as a French marionette, and Emma Nelson, who sang the film classic “Over the Rainbow,” from “The Wizard of Oz,” rounded out the competition in the adult category.
During the performances, Lamar said he and Monson were dumbfounded by the quality of talent presented at the 2012 competition. He said he could easily see southern Utah’s talent going on a show like America’s Got Talent and winning with ease.
“The level of talent was astounding,” Lamar said. “It was incredible.”
While the audience enjoyed performances from last year’s youth and adult winners, pianist Keely Schmerber and opera singers Heidi Dixon and Marcia Crofts, audience votes and judges’ scores were tallied.
The envelope containing the final results was given to Lamar, and all three categories were called onstage in their respective orders.
- Youth: Lauren Cain
- Young Adult: Sabrina Parry
- Adult: Emma Nelson
Each of the winnrers received a recording session with Spiral Studios, the Diamond Award trophy, various gift certificates to local businesses, and tickets to the Andy Grammer concert to be held on Jan. 26, at Dixie State College.
“Dixie’s Got Talent is such a wonderful event,” Monson said. “It provides a venue for [performers] to share their talent, is a fun way for the community to help select the stars of Dixie, and also raises money for individuals who would otherwise not be able to attend college.”
The profits are donated to the Dixie State College’s needs-based scholarship program.
Copyright 2012 St. George News. This material may not be published or rewritten without written consent.