'I guess my personality dictated I do something a bit crazy'
THE Warwick State High School Talent Quest has again served up a tantalising glimpse into the future as students gave their all for a shot at the prizes on offer.
The event, held on Tuesday night at Warwick Town Hall, saw a large crowd gather to cheer and laugh as the talented kids put on a show.
After the stage dust had settled, the judges put their heads together and awarded three awards.
Also up for grabs were the performer's and audience choice awards.
Dancer Georga Tumata took out the overall winner with a stunning dance routine, demonstrating her 12 years of training.
Georga said the routine, which she choreographed herself, was something she had danced at eisteddfods in the past.
"You have to feel a connection to the music you're dancing to," she said.
"I think of a routine and try it out, and if it doesn't work I'll try again.
"I certainly wasn't expecting to, but it's nice to win - what I really enjoyed about the night was seeing what the other kids did, and being really surprised by the talent of a few."
Twelve-year-old Year 7 student Tyron Cruice had the most unexpected act of the night and took out the Rising Star award.
Tryon's quirky singing, tap dancing and comedic performance of the Raffi song, Bananaphone, was a huge hit with the crowd.
"I guess my personality dictated I do something a bit crazy," he said.
"I was a little nervous, but went with it and have received so much great feedback."
Tyron has only been tap dancing for 10 weeks.
"I chose the song and my teacher and I choreographed the steps to fit," he said.
"It was a lot of fun and I was really pleased to win Rising Star."
The award for Performance Innovation went to Tess King whose soulful rendition of her own piano composition, Grey, impressed the judges.
Tess said the song was inspired by storm clouds.
"My keyboards face out my window at home," she said.
"And I wrote this while looking out at storm clouds gathering in the distance.
"It's an improvised peice - there is a general theme but the song changes every time I play it."
Tess recently auditioned for the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and is hoping to study jazz piano and music technology.
Tess also took out the Performer's Choice award with friend Luisa Schramm.
The pair performed the Rhianna song, Love on the Brain.
School captain Luisa said she had approached Tess to accompany her while she sang.
"I did get a little friendly pressure from a few people to sing at the talent quest, because I chickened out last year," she said.
"My mum threatened to kick me out of the house if I didn't get up and show people I could sing.
"We learned the song just before the audition and had a few sessions before the night, but we'd usually get sidetracked and start singing other songs.
"It's really nice to get that response from the other students."
One of the most moving performances of the evening was a version of Ed Sheeran's Supermarket Flowers sung by Logan Cruice.
The Year 11 student dedicated the song to a friend and said he hadn't planned on doing that.
"The song meant a lot to me and as the event got closer I felt like I had to," he said.
"When I think about it now, I wanted to show people there is a message behind every song and I wanted to show the message in this song.
"I wasn't out for an award but I'm happy and in the end really proud of everyone that performed - they did an amazing job."
Again this year I had the honour of being one of the judges for the event and thoroughly enjoyed the chance to relive my own Warwick High days as well lending my opinion to the evening.
The quality on show was exceptional, with many outstanding and amusing acts.
With time, practise and a rising confidence, there's no doubt we'll hear from some of these performers again.
My only criticism of the evening would be of the sound system in the Warwick Town Hall.
With people paying good money to hold events there, it would be great to see council get in and upgrade the sub-standard system.
That aside though, I thoroughly enjoyed watching all the acts and have the utmost respect for the kids that got up and had a go.
There were many who were in the running for those top prizes and I guess the tough part about being a judge was narrowing it down to just a few.
They're all winners in my book.
Overall, I had a wonderful time and was proud to be a part of it all.