13th Annual Future Stars Performing Arts Competition Held At Mizner Park Amphitheater
by Casey Westfall
Young dance and vocal students performed in front of their families, mentors, friends, and admirers at Mizner Park Amphitheater during the Boca Raton Rotary Club’s 13th Annual Future Stars Performing Arts Competition.
Of the 78 contestants who auditioned for the show on Dec. 12, 2015, only 31 were selected by judges to perform at Sunday’s show.
The show, directed this year by Bill Riddick and Bob Buruchian, featured performances from both middle and high school students, and was divided into five categories; middle school dance solo, high school dance solo, middle school vocal solo, high school vocal solo, and dance group.
The following are the winners for each category:
- Dancetown Boca – “Salvation”
- Sophia Grau and Dougal Herr – “Bam Bam”
- Allie Cawthorne Dance Company – “To This Day”
Middle School Dance
- Jillian Carpenter
- Arielle Rothenberg
- Cecilie Brattli
Middle School Vocal:
- Heather Kirschner
- Isabelle Eisenberg
- Sivan Ben-David
High School Dance
- Meescha Cooper
- Sydney Stephenson
- Brittany Weger
High School Vocal
- Hannah Crampton-Thomas
- Alexandra Marra
- Cassandra Ortiz
Two additional awards were given during the show, which were the Director’s Choice Award, and the Spirit Award. The Director’s Choice Award went to Jon Paul Nesheiwat this year, while the Spirit Award was given to Laura Granello.
In addition to the awards given to the first through third place winners, each finalist who performed in the competition received medals, and all who performed in the show now have the opportunity to apply for one of the Rotary Club’s need-based performing arts scholarships.
Judges for the show were made up of Rotary Club members, as well as professional members of the performing arts community, including Boca Ballet’s executive director and co-artistic director, Dan Guin.
Included in the lineup was a performance by Maggie Baugh, a country guitarist and fiddler native to Boca Raton. Baugh was awarded both Favorite Female Local Artist and Favorite Song by a Local Artist by South Florida Country Music in 2015.
The Rotary Club stated that the mission of Future Stars is “to provide South Florida’s most talented high school and middle school performers a professional quality production worthy of their amazing talent.”
Future Stars began 13 years ago, when one of the Rotary Club’s members, Rick Taylor, whose daughter was an aspiring vocalist in high school, expressed his desire for young people gifted in the arts to have more opportunities to exhibit and perfect their talents, and led to the creation of the competition.