GRAND ISLAND – The Nebraska State Fair and Vision Productions, Inc. presented the 13th Annual Galaxy of Stars® Talent Search two day competition at Fonner Park, the Semi-Finals on Saturday, September 2nd and the Finals on Sunday, September 3rd. Since its beginning in 1993, the Galaxy of Stars® Talent Search has grown to be the biggest talent search in Nebraska, featuring singers, dancers, instrumentalists, variety acts and songwriters.
Twenty-eight acts including forty-one contestants from twenty-six towns across Nebraska competed on the Bristol Windows Stage in the Semi-Finals. All Semi-Finalist Contestants received a Galaxy of Stars® Medal. Songwriters of the Top Three Original Songs showcased their songs during the Finals. Fifteen of the Highest Scoring performances in the Talent Search advanced to the Finals with contestants competing for over $9,000.00 in prizes, cash, trophies & a Nashville Recording Package.
FINALISTS – Fifteen acts, listed in random order, advanced to the Finals:
COMETS (12 & Under) – Bailey Rogers, Vocal, Minden; Trinity McMillan, Crete, & Adysen Zeimann, Pleasant Dale, Group Dance; Cooper Hogan, Vocal, Cortland.
SHOOTING STARS (13 to 18) -Taylor Smith, Vocal, Kearney; Ana Zinnecker, Vocal, Martell;Morayah Cupp, Vocal, Champion; Jocelyn Kennicutt, Vocal, Gothenburg; TAPS Honors Dance Team: Isaac Weander, Marlee Weidner, Kiran Walker, Kali Hyde, Norfolk; Elise Anderson, Vocal,Lincoln; Liam Barcel & Reagan Gausman, Group Vocal, Columbus.
NOVAS (19 & Over) – The Ehrkes, Group Vocal: Jared Ehrke, Lexington; Jenna Meyers, Eagle;Andrea Ehrke, Lincoln; David Ehrke, Alma; Carly Cremers, Variety, Columbus; Andrea Ehrke,Vocal, Lincoln; Tazalea Scott, Vocal, Westerville; Johnna Jane, Vocal, Gothenburg.
NEBRASKA STATE FAIR AWARDS AND WINNERS
Cash Awards were presented by Vision Productions, Inc. and the Nebraska State Fair. Trophies and Medals were presented by Awards Plus, Kelly Kava & Michelle Mariani, Grand Island, and Vision Productions, Inc. Nashville Recording Session Packages for Overall Vocalist and 1st Place Songwriter were presented by Mark Allen, Benchmark Productions, Nashville, and Vision Productions, Inc. 2nd Place Songwriter was awarded a Skype Consultation and Song Critique presented by Kirsti Manna, #1 Billboard Hit Writer, Nashville.
Special Recognition Awards:
Presented by Vision Productions, Inc.
Above and Beyond Awards were presented to Becky Jones, Kearney, and Richard Floe, Kearney, for going “Above and Beyond” to support and encourage Nebraska talent.
Dream, Believe and Achieve Award was presented to Dennis Miller, Kearney, for exemplifying the vision of the Galaxy of Stars®: Dare to “DREAM” big, “BELIEVE” in your God given talents and strive to “ACHIEVE” your highest goals and aspirations.
MEGA STAR (Highest Scoring Contestant Overall)
SHINING STAR (Highest Scoring Contestant(s) in Star Quality, “The Shine Factor”)
SUPERSTAR (Voted Overall Best Performance by All Contestants)
PEOPLES CHOICE (Voted Overall Best Performance by Audience)
Age Division Awards:
COMETS (12 & Under)
1st Place $250.00 Cash & Trophy: Trinity McMillan, Crete, & Adysen Ziemann,
2nd Place $150.00 Cash & Trophy: Bailey Rogers, Vocal, Minden
3rd Place $100.00 Cash & Trophy: Cooper Hogan, Vocal, Cortland
SHOOTING STARS (13 to 18):
1st Place $250.00 Cash & Trophy: TAPS Honors Dance Team: Isaac Weander, Marlee Weidner,
2nd Place $150.00 Cash & Trophy: Elise Anderson, Vocal, Lincoln
3rd Place $100.00 Cash & Trophy: Taylor Smith, Vocal, Kearney
NOVAS (19 & Over)
1st Place $250.00 Cash & Trophy: Carly Cremers, Variety, Columbus
2nd Place $150.00 Cash & Trophy: The Ehrkes, Group Vocal*
3rd Place $100.00 Cash & Trophy: Tazalea Scott, Vocal, Westerville
Overall Vocalist (Highest Scoring Individual or Group – All Age Divisions)
Presented by Mark Allen, Benchmark Productions, Inc., Nashville, & Vision Productions, Inc.
Nashville Recording Package ($4,000.00 Value) – Includes Production Consultation, National Song Search,
Studio Musicians, Background Singers, Produced, Mixed and Mastered.
The Ehrkes, Novas, Group Vocal
* Jared Ehrke, Lexington; Jenna Meyers, Eagle; Andrea Ehrke, Lincoln; David Ehrke, Alma
GALAXY OF STARS® SONGWRITING CONTEST: The Top Three Songwriters of the Galaxy of Stars® Songwriting Contest were presented their awards at the Finals Awards Ceremony, and Songwriters of the Top Ten Original Songs were acknowledged on stage during the Awards Ceremony. All Songwriters of the Top Ten Original Songs received a Galaxy of Stars® Medal.
Top Three Original Song Awards:
1st Place: $250.00 Cash and Trophy; Nashville Recording Session ($3,500 Value) presented by Mark Allen Productions, Nashville, & Vision Productions, Inc. – Includes Song Critique, Production Consultation, Studio Musicians and Vocalists, Produced, Mixed and Mastered.
“By The Graee Of God (B.T.G.O.G.)” Ryan Martinez, La Vista
2nd Place: $150.00 Cash and Trophy; 1 Hour Skype Consultation ($200.00 Value) and Song Critique ($50.00 Value) presented by Kirsti Manna#1 Billboard Hit Writer, Nashville.
“It Helps” Raquel Telfer, Omaha, & Sheree Miller, Lincoln
3rd Place: $100.00 Cash & Trophy.
“The Lord’s Army” Shelby Stevens, McCook
GALAXY OF STARS® SPECTACULAR TRIBUTE CONCERT FOR VETERANS
Wynne Vanessa Adams of Vision Productions, Inc. and the Nebraska State Fair presented a Tribute Concert, “Together We Are American Strong” for the Veterans, U.S Military and Their Families Monday, September 4th from 10:A.M. – Noon on the Bristol Windows Stage, featuring Past Mega Stars and Finalists of the Galaxy of Stars® Talent Search – 2015 Mega Stars Major Minor 3 – Shelby Stevens, Riley & Tyler Rambali, McCook; 2014 Mega Star Jesse Hake, Kearney; 2009 Mega Star Don Mittan, Lincoln and Past Galaxy Finalists: Deanna Floe, Scottsbluff, Chelsea Arnold, Crete, and2017 Shooting Stars First Place Winners, TAPS Honors Dance Team – Kiran Walker, Marlee Weidner, Isaac Weander, Kali Hyde, Norfolk.
The Galaxy of Stars Spectacular Entertainers-Major Minor 3, Jesse Hake, Chelsea Arnold, TAPS Honors Dance Team, joined by Ginger ten Bensel, McCook, Trish Linscott, Omaha and Wynne Adams, Nashville, performed for the Veterans Day Program at the Heartland Event Center.