The Durango Voice

The Durango Voice

Emily Fiala, Reporter

The Voice is an internationally famous singing competition that captures the audience’ attention and hearts. In the past two months a smaller version of The Voice had been held right here in our small town of Durango.

The event started on February 24 at the Henry Strater Theatre. Talented singers auditioned in front of a panel of judges, hoping that they could make it to the finals.

Out of the number of auditions, only 13 made it to the finals. These lucky 13 were McKenzie Belt, Ashlyn Boomer, Macie Fogel, Rebekah DeLaMare, Shinta Dewi Fuller, Ellie Ferguson, Sophie Maja Hughes, Adde Neiman, Mark Palmer, Andrew Schuhmann, Chris Smith, Jenna Szczech and Devin Willis.

“Many contestants were younger this year, which made the event more diverse and family-friendly than ever before,” said Erika Morin, head of the Durango Voice.

The finalists were chosen and coached by four professional coaches for a month. The coaches included Jill Holly, Bailey Barnes-Fagg, Andreas Tischhauser and Drea Pressley.

After the month of coaching was over, the newly-trained finalists were ready for the finals, which took place on April 7th.

The winner of the finals received prizes and certificates, along with opportunities to perform gigs all around Durango.

The event was not only started as a fun activity for the community to enjoy, but started as a fundraiser for the Manna Soup Kitchen. All the funds raised goes to the general operation of Manna.

“The event’s original producer brought the idea to Manna as a fun and original fundraiser,” said Morin.

The 2018 Durango Voice raised thousands of dollars for the soup kitchen.

“We haven’t received final ticket sale figures back, but we expect the event will raise between $5,000 and $10,000 after all expenses have been accounted for,” said Morin.

This money raised goes towards the meals, bathing, laundry, and transportation aid offered at the Mann Soup Kitchen. They served about 60,000 meals in the year 2016, and this money goes to those meals and services.

This event was a great way for the community to have fun while giving back to the needy. This show has gone on for the past three years, and it has been a big hit each year.

“The second show this year was completely sold out and the first show was close to being sold out,” said Morin.

One of our own students, junior Sophie Hughes, won second place in the finals. DHS Senior Jenna Szech and Sophomore McKenzie Belt also made it to the finals along with Hughes.  

Overall, this event not only brings joy and entertainment to the community, but gives back to the needy. It also gives talented vocalists of all ages to come and show off their skills in front of the community.

So if anyone has a love for music and wants to help the needy in our town, participate in the Durango Voice!