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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, May 6, 2011 - Volume 39 Issue 18
Pride Idol sizzles on pop music night
Arts & Entertainment
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Pride Idol sizzles on pop music night

by Shaun Knittel - SGN Associate Editor

Pop music is just plain fun. Whether it's Lady Gaga telling us to 'Just Dance' or Madonna asking us to 'Vogue,' the pop songs that top the charts evoke the need to dance or sing along. May 1 was Pop Music Night at Pride Idol, and the competition performed their best bubble-gum top 40 hits for us.

Pride Idol is a citywide singing contest produced and presented by SO&P, Verizon Wireless, FUZE, Seattle's Best Karaoke, and Seattle Gay News every Sunday night at Neighbours Nightclub (1509 Broadway) and is hosted by Gaysha Starr. Doors open at 6 p.m., when contestants can sign up to sing in the 7 p.m. competition. The grand finale is scheduled for June 19, where a winner will be chosen as Seattle's 2011 Pride Idol!

The show got off to a great start with Starr performing Rihanna's 'S&M' with the help of some candle wax and cheers from the audience. This week, C89.5 radio DJ Richard Dalton joined the esteemed (well, kind of) panel of judges - the wickedly wild pop-tart Sister Domine Trix, me, and the talented, luscious, and Jackie-O-inspired Kitty Corset - as we helped the audience decide who would advance to the Wildcard and Pride Idol finals.

Contestant number one, Bobby, had an amazing voice, but chose the wrong song. He sang Jason Mraz when he should have been singing a song that really showed off his vocal prowess. Although he didn't place, I can speak for all the judges when I say he should come back and give it another shot.

In what was perhaps one of the best performances of the night, Sarah Lising delivered an amazing version of Gwen Stefani's 'Underneath it All.' Although the karaoke version did not contain the rap, Sarah was more than happy to perform it a capella, much to the delight of the judges and audience alike. Sarah moved on to the Wildcard round where she will compete for a chance to make the finals!

Gary Deyter chose some '80s pop and slowed things down a bit with the Journey classic 'Open Arms.' Great voice, bad song choice. You can really sing, Gary, so come back and give it another try!

Susan Sinas was the surprise of the night. She delivered a spot-on rendition of Tina Turner's 'Private Dancer' and everyone loved it. Although it wasn't enough to advance her to the final show, we'd love to have Susan back any time.

Clayton Coleman is a star. He very well may be the next Pride Idol. He is sexy, talented, and loves to sing. This week, he struck gold with the Luther Vandross hit 'Always and Forever,' which advanced him to the finals. I can't wait to see what he brings for the season finale on June 19!

While one contestant went missing (we think they chickened out), Pride Idol enthusiast and showman Angel Chris gladly stepped in and delivered another of his signature 'Angel moments.' If you've been to Pride Idol, then you will know what that means. If you have yet to come out, what are you waiting for?

Pride Idol favorite Zoe Dixon returned (she is already slated for the Wildcard round) to sing Pink's 'Who Knew.' Zoe is quite the performer and is welcome on the Pride Idol stage any time.

Slowing things down a bit, Matthew Hefel sang Neil Diamond's 'Hello Again' to a very receptive audience. Matthew proved to be quite the vocalist, and although the song wasn't quite as pop-infused as we would've liked, he did an outstanding job.

Rounding out a great night of performances were our three guest entertainers.

Bianca Starr returned to the Pride Idol stage to give us another taste of her fierceness. This queen can do it all; she can dance, gives good face, and is a joy to watch. Also, other queens take note: she knows her words. Bianca truly is a star, and I suspect we will be seeing a lot more of her in the weeks to come.

Yee-Shin Huang is a part of the Pride Idol family. Moving seamlessly from his role as a contestant last season to a local entertainer today, Yee-Shin wowed the audience by singing (and dancing) to Jay Sean's 'Down.' His voice is amazing, he's super-cute, and he's a true entertainer.

Caesar Hart is the go-to drag king of Seattle. Whether he's co-starring as Eminem to Gaysha Star's Rihanna or performing an Adam Lambert song, Caesar is hot, hot, hot. He flirts with the girls, flirts with the boys, and owns the audience from beginning to end. Seattle audiences just can't get enough of the amazingly talented Caesar Hart!

This year, Pride Idol is themed!

May 8: Latino Night
May 15: Country Music Night
May 29: Soundtrack Night
June 5: Burlesque Night

You don't have to choose songs that go with that night's theme, but it is highly encouraged. Also, remember to dress the part - you are performing, after all - and try to win over the judges and audience alike.

Each week there is a prize of $100 for first place, a Verizon Wireless Bluetooth Device and a spot in the Wildcard round for second place, and two VIP tickets to Le Faux at Julia's on Broadway for third.

Who's going to take home the Pride Idol trophy and prizes this year? Why not you? You can sign up in person the night of the competition or online at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/162931. There is a $10 fee to enter the contest.

This year's Grand Finale prize package is very attractive: $300 will go to the third place winner, $500 to second place, and first prize is $1,000 plus a Verizon Wireless phone, two round-trip tickets to anywhere in the continental U.S. or Canada aboard Delta airlines (courtesy of Orbitz), and a chance to perform aboard the SO&P float during the Seattle Pride Parade, June 26.

Come out and sing! Show us what you've got and become Seattle's next Pride Idol!

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Pride Idol sizzles on pop music night
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