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Talent Search Continues with 19 Local Acts Advancing to The Finals

The final round of Overture's Rising Stars, The Finals, is open to the public and will be held in the historic Capitol Theater on Sat., Sept. 9, 7:30 p.m. with each of the advancing acts performing in front of a live audience and judges Barbara Bolan, Clyde Mayberry, DJ Pain 1, Jessica Lanius, Scott O'Donnel. Hosted by Tim Sauers, Overture's vice president of programming and community engagement, the ceremony will include a performance by Lost Lakes, featuring Overture's 2014 Rising Star winner Corey Mathew Hart and Paul Mitch. Tickets ($10-15) are available at, 608.258.4141, or at Overture's ticket office at 201 State Street.

"We pride ourselves on encouraging and honoring local aspiring artists, whether it be through performance or educational opportunities," said Sauers. "We could never have anticipated the number of high-quality acts that would audition or what a tremendous response from participants, community partners and audience members we would have. Rising Stars has helped to uncover local talent, like past finalists and winners Forte Fusion, Dr. Roderquita K. Moore, William Taylor and Elijah Edwards, and provides exposure and other performance opportunities to advance their artistic careers."

Of the over 60 acts that auditioned this year, 19 will compete for prizes in each age category and one grand prize. Cash prizes of $750 will be awarded to Rising Stars in the following three age categories who are named Overture's Rising Stars: Youth (6-12), Teen (13-18), and Adult (19+). The grand prize winner will receive $1,000 and the opportunity to perform at Overture next season. Last year's grand prize winner, William Taylor, will open for Canadian dance company Cas Public on Fri., Oct. 20 in Capitol Theater.

There are no fees to registrants to participate in Rising Stars. For the first time this year, a preparatory workshop on July 15 allowed participants the chance to perform and receive constructive feedback from local professionals before the audition process, which began in Aug. Following the auditions, judges deliberated and determined the 19 acts moving on to The Finals.

Overture's Rising Stars was premiered as a local talent search aimed at highlighting and celebrating members of our local communities during Overture's 10th Anniversary. In its first year, the program garnered more than 200 acts auditioned at six sites across Dane County.

This project is supported by Arts Access, a component fund of the Madison Community Foundation, Madison-Kipp Corporation & Dane Arts with additional funds from the Evjue Foundation.

OVERTURE CENTER FOR THE ARTS in Madison, Wis., features seven state-of-the-art performance spaces and five galleries where national and international touring artists, ten resident companies and hundreds of local artists engage people in nearly 700,000 educational and artistic experiences each year.

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