Kayla Perkins and Michael Williams (R) are all smiles as they accept the winning check from Angie Bado, Owner,TownSquareBuzz.com, and Mayor Brian Loughmiller.
Kayla Perkins and Michael Williams were all smiles as David Taylor, the Executive Director of the McKinney Performing Arts Center (MPAAC) in downtown McKinney, annouced their names as the winner of both the group category and the audience favorite at the McKinney MashUp on Saturday, September 10. Jackie Wasson shrieked as she heard her name announced as the solo category winner.
Students at McKinney Boyd High School, Williams and Perkins received a check for $1000 as the group winner and a five hundred dollar prize for being selected as the audience favorite. Wasson, 16 and a junior at McKinney High School, also received a check for $1000. The three McKinney residents were up against talented singers from across the Metroplex and from as far away as Houston. All three artists will perform with American Idol winner Taylor Hicks on Saturday, September 17 at 8 p.m. at MPAC. (See our full interview with Taylor Hicks)
Perkins and Williams wowed the audience, showcasing their big voices, with their moving version of “The Prayer”. Perkins has been singing since the age of five, while Williams just started singing two years ago. Both will be playing lead roles in McKinney Boyd’s upcoming production of “The Phantom of the Opera”, Perkins in the role of Christine and Williams as the Phantom.
Wasson’s winning performance was a rendition of Michael Buble’s “Everything”. Wasson has also been singing her entire life and often performs with her father’s Strata Big Band at various area jazz festivals. She is an accomplished actor and dancer.
While excitedly jumping up and down with several friends in one of the dressing rooms, Wasson said, “I thought I was gonna black out when they called my name. I kept thinking did they really call my name?”.
Photo: Solo performance winner, Jackie Wasson, displays her prize money with TownSquareBuzz.com owner, Angie Bado (center), and Mayor of McKinney, Brian Loughmiller.
The journey began as early as June with contestants uploading a two minute video clip of their performance in the group or solo category. Then they had to spread the word and get friends and family to vote for them via various internet outlets. The top ten performers in each category were chosen to participate in the semi-finals from those who received the most votes. During the semi-finals on Saturday afternoon, the audience voted for the top ten performers who would move on to the finals. A panel of expert judges, including Season 8 top ten American Idol finalist, Michael Sarver, critiqued each performance and selected the winners.