BRANDON — Hillsborough County has no shortage of talent shows, in schools and in the community, as well as on social media platforms. And here’s one more — the Brandon’s Got Talent, Too! competition, which is slated for a Center Place stage in October.
Organizer Lisa Westcott said having a rich array of performance opportunities is both good for the community and for the people who are passionate about the arts but may be too timid, or too busy, to pursue a more time-intensive experience on stage.
“We’re not in competition with anybody; the more the better,” said Westcott, a community theater veteran and director of the Joshua Generation Musical Theater Company. “Brandon’s Got Talent, Too! is a fundraiser for our studio so that we can stage musicals and productions in excellence.”
This will be the third year for the talent show, which aims to attract both experienced and novice talent.
“We wanted to get out in the community to attract people who might not otherwise be involved in performance activities,” Westcott said. “There are so many people who are not professionals in the arts, but they have a love for it and they have some skills. We wanted to give them a venue in their own town that is encouraging and supportive of the arts of all forms.”
Never been on stage? Fear not, Westcott said.
“I’ve seen amazing and I’ve seen OK but they’ve all been great in their own way,” she said about past acts. “We’ve had performers I’ve never seen before and some people who are terrified to be on stage. For them to come out is an incredible accomplishment. If they have a love for performing, that’s all I want to see.”
Acts can run the gamut from vocalists to instrumentalists, from actors to dancers, and anything else that comes to mind, including — as in a past talent show — a person performing yo-yo tricks, Westcott said.
“The only thing we are not allowing this time around are bands, just because it takes too much time to set up and take down and we need to keep the show moving,” she added.
On hand will be three judges — Domin Pazo, for acting; Oliver Sprague, for vocals; and Heather Price, for dancing. Pazo, Sprague and Westcott this month won MONTI community theater awards for acting.
Price is a dance instructor at the Shining Starz Dance Studio, at 328 W. Robertson St., which is the home base as well for the Joshua Generation Musical Theater Company, a Christian-based training, discipleship and outreach program that aims to stage musical theater productions of excellence.
The Brandon’s Got Talent, Too! fundraiser is family-friendly.
“Not everyone is going to be selected because of space (and time constraints),” Westcott said. “We will make that determination at auditions.”
Auditions — on a first-come, first-served basis — are scheduled for Sept. 21, from 5 to 9 p.m., at the Shining Stars Studio in Brandon, at 328 West Robertson St. There is a $15 per-person audition fee. If the act has three people or more, the price per person drops to $10, with a $50 cap.
Brandon’s Got Talent, Too! is scheduled for Oct. 15, at 6:30 p.m., at the Center Place Fine Arts & Civic Association, which shares space with the Brandon Regional Library in the Sandy Rodriguez Center, at 609 Vonderburg Drive. The ticket price has not yet been determined.
Judging will be in four categories — voice, instrumental, acting and dance — with cash prizes awarded to the first-place designees. The runners-up will receive certificates. Audience members will “vote” for one overall, “wild card” winner. Each vote will cost $1.
For more information, call Westcott at (813) 928-0905. For additional information about the Shining Stars Dance Studio, visit online at shiningstarz dancestudio.com. For the Joshua Generation Musical Theater Company, visit thenewjoshuageneration .com.