Two local teens will attempt to prove they aren't one-time wonders in round two of "Smyrna's Got Voice – Kids Rock!" on Saturday at the Smyrna Opera House .
"Smyrna's Got Voice – Kid's Rock!" is the Smyrna Opera House's annual American Idol-inspired contest featuring 14 kids throughout the state in two age categories: a group for 10 to 13 year olds and another for performers aged 14 to 17. Round one was held in February and the contestants have since been trimmed down to 10. A total of six performers (three from both age categories) will advance to the finale on April 27. Audience members play a key role as they decide who advances to each round. Judges only vote in the event of a tie.
Returning contestants from the Smyrna-Clayton area is baritone-tenor singer Anthony McClymont, 14, of Clayton, and alto singer Chrystina Haldeman, 16, of Smyrna. The pair shed light on their first-time experience in round one, the songs they'll tackle in round two and more.
Q What was your debut like in "Smyrna's Got Voice?"
Haldeman It was definitely exciting — I can tell you that, because the people who voted for me thought I was good enough to get on to the second round.
McClymont It was really scary because I was called forward last in our group. But it was fun.
Q How did you distinguish yourself from the contestants who were eliminated?
McClymont My personality [laughs]. I gave a few shout-outs from backstage that I was asked to do and I think that won over a few people; I gave a few shout-outs to a few moms and friends. And before the song [Eric Clapton's "Wonderful Tonight"] I also said, "This is for the ladies" and everybody screamed.
Haldeman I think, maybe, it was my experience with singing in front of larger crowds. There's a competition with churches all over the place that I do every year and it's called Teens Involved; it includes churches from all across the region, and even some from Brazil and Canada.
Q What will you sing in round two, and what attracted you to that song?
Haldeman I'm going to sing "Skyfall" by Adele, and my mom actually attracted me to this one. I was having a hard time picking a song and my mom and dad had gotten the movie "Sky Fall" and they were watching it, and my mom was like, "I think you'd do a really good job on this song," so I decided to give it a try.
Page 2 of 2 - McClymont I'm going to sing "Follow Me" by Uncle Kracker because, like Chrystina, I was also having a hard time picking my song. I was going to do either "Drift Away" [by Uncle Kracker"] or "50 Ways to Say Goodbye" [by Train]. I stuck with "50 Ways to Say Goodbye" for a little bit, but then it was a little, too, hard to match the pitch, so I went with one song I know very well and that I like very much.
Q What have you learned from round one that will prepare you for Saturday?
McClymont Just stay the same and show a lot of personality, and try to win over the crowd.
Haldeman You have to show personality. You have to get the crowd involved and you really have to get into your music. And I'm going to show personality by being me, because in the first round I was kind of trying represent everyone, because my song ["A Team" by Ed Sheeran] was about how everyone's been through a tough time and everyone's been stuck in a rut and doesn't' know how to get out. This time I'm going to just focus on myself with this song and just show my personality.
IF YOU GO
WHAT Round two of "Smyrna's Got Voice – Kids Rock!"
WHEN 7 p.m. Saturday, March 23
WHERE Smyrna Opera House, 7 W. South St., Smyrna
COST $13; $30 family four-pack (must include two kids)
INFO Smyrnaoperahouse.org or 653-4236