Fort Mill Times

Got talent? Fort Mill contest will be the judge of that

Fort Mill High School Band members Michael Edwards and Devin Stinson perform at Wando last season. The Fort Mill’s Got Talent competition is one of several upcoming events to help band members with expenses for their trip to Normandy, France, next year.
Fort Mill High School Band members Michael Edwards and Devin Stinson perform at Wando last season. The Fort Mill’s Got Talent competition is one of several upcoming events to help band members with expenses for their trip to Normandy, France, next year. FORT MILL TIMES FILE PHOTO

Singers, comedians, dancers and other acts of all ages will grace the stage in Fort Mill to show off their talents while supporting the Fort Mill High School Marching Band.

The first annual Fort Mill’s Got Talent competition will be 7 p.m. Sept. 12 at at the Fort Mill High School auditorium, said LeAnne Burnett Morse, a member of the Fort Mill Band Booster board of directors. Morse will be producing the show in concert with Bluestocking Media.

Auditions will be scheduled after Morse and other judges view submitted videos submitted. Videos will be accepted until June 30.

A committee will narrow the field to 15 of the best acts, which will compete for first-, second- and third-place prizes, Morse said.

“The more (acts) we have, the more opportunity we will have to choose the top acts and make it a great show,” she said.

Proceeds will benefit the band’s March to Normandy yearlong campaign to raise $90,000 for its planned trip to Normandy, France, where they have been invited to perform at the Normandy American Cemetery in April, Morse said.

The band will provide scholarships to students who need help paying for the trip, she said. Morse said band members will learn about World War II and the Fort Mill soldiers who lost their lives during the conflict.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” Morse said. “We’re trying to raise money to give everyone the opportunity to go.”

The funds also will support the band’s efforts to move instruments overseas and other costs associated with the trip.

Celebrity judges include Fort Mill Mayor Danny Funderburk and Hootie and the Blowfish drummer Gary Greene. The first-place winner will receive $500 and a trophy; second place will take home $300; and third will win $200. Chuck Boozer of WRHI’s “Palmetto Mornings” will host the show.

“It’s time to get the band out of the garage and get it on stage,” Morse said. “We’d like to see people bring some unique ideas to us.”

Audience votes will count for 25 percent of the total score. “It gives these acts the opportunity to drum up as much support as they can,” Morse said.

The talent show is open to various acts of all ages, Morse said. “We wanted to have something that can be associated with the band that allows people to express their creativity in a venue where they might not otherwise be able to.”

Morse, who has 24 years’ experience in television and live-event production and writing, said the show will be of professional quality.

“It is going to be a quality show,” she said.

The talent show is one of the band’s largest fundraisers for March to Normandy, Morse said.

“We’d like to see this become a yearly event,” she said. “We have a lot of support within the band family, but this is an opportunity for the community to show their support.”

Want to audition?

To submit an audition video, go to fortmillhsband.com or email talentshow@fortmillhsband.com. Videos are due by June 30.

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