Youth talent show a singing success

RICKREALL -- Most people would be nervous when they step on a talent competition stage for the first time.

RICKREALL -- Most people would be nervous when they step on a talent competition stage for the first time.

Not Monmouth teens McKay, Chad and Hannah Boyack.

The three combined for two entries in the Polk County Fair: McKay performing solo and Chad and Hannah teaming up on one song.

Just minutes before the popular Polk County Fair Youth Talent Show began on Friday, Aug. 12, they laughed and talked with family and friends in the audience. There wasn't a hint that in a short time they would be performing before judges.

"They practiced a lot, which is good, but I wouldn't say they are nervous about it," said the trio's mother, Wendy Boyack.

Perhaps the reason for their calm demeanor is that all have grown up with music and are seasoned performers.

McKay was in Central High School's production of "Little Shop of Horrors" last spring and Hannah was in choir at Talmadge Middle School. Chad picked up the ukulele a couple of years ago, inspired by friends at Central who gathered to play before school.

The new experience for the Boyacks was that it was a contest, which inspired a little sibling rivalry.

"We've been joking about it," McKay said. "But I don't think there will be any hard feelings."

McKay and the Chad and Hannah duo went with the unusual for their song selections.

McKay, 17, performed "Joey is a Punk Rocker," from the Joe Iconis musical "The Black Suits." It's a song about a girl embarrassed to have a crush on a singer in a punk rock band.

Hannah, 13, sang Christina Perri's bitter breakup song "Jar of Hearts," while Chad, 16, provided ukulele accompaniment.

Both performances stood out in a crowd of singing, dancing and other talents.

Chad and Hannah stripped down the pop song and rearranged it for ukulele. Hannah's powerful voice was balanced well by Chad's accomplished playing.

McKay's performance technically fit into the singing category, but the number would be better described as a mini musical theater act -- part singing, part acting.

She picked the song for that very reason.

"It's not something a lot of people would expect from me," McKay said. "It's upbeat and gives me a lot of room to be creative."

Both numbers received a rousing round of applause.

After that was just the waiting for results.

"I feel really good about it," McKay said of her performance.

Chad was equally confident.

"I think both our styles complemented each other," he said.

In the end, both performances were rated in the top 10 among more than 30 acts, despite tough out-of-county competition.

Chad said he was proud of his first contest showing, but disappointed not to be in the top three.

Hannah, however, was pleased.

"I'm glad that we got in the top 10 and got recognized for it," she said.


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