TeenFest 2K10

TeenFest 2K10 was held at Carolina Theatre in downtown Durham. The workshops were packed and informative, the talent competition was hot, and all in attendance seemed happy and just a bit more knowledgeable about the dangers of drugs and the importance of violence prevention. Click the [“TeenFest TV” link] to the right to see winners’ performance videos!

TeenFest 2K10 was held in a new venue with new judges, additional information and vendor booths. This was the first year for a live on-stage music director, Kirby Hamilton, Jr., who helped keep the pace of the show moving. But the big question on the minds of TeenFest faithfuls was, “Is 2010 the year of Leviticus?”

Leviticus auditioned in 2K7 but did not score high enough to garner an invitation to compete. They took the judges’ recommendations to heart and came back stronger in 2K8 and 2K9. They made it past the auditions and placed 3rd both years. Their resilience, drive, and determination made them work harder each year — honing their act by keeping their message relevant, improving their delivery, tightening their choreography and polishing their stage presence. Their performance kept the audience screaming and brought the judges to their feet. And 2010 proved to be the year of Leviticus, as they walked away with the $1,000 1st place prize.

Alicia Marie Gomez of Chapel Hill proved to be a strong competitor as she transformed herself through a spoken word piece delivered so skillfully that the audience was stunned into silence. Her hard-hitting message about violence was so forceful and moving that one judge compared her to author, poet and playwright Sonia Sanchez. Another judge predicted that she is a rising star.

Sean Ellison of Durham started the talent competition by daring this current generation to break their bonds of apathy, shake off teen pregnancy as a fashion statement, and recognize that “love” offered by gang members is an oxymoron. His forthright delivery, unwavering confidence and direct call for critical thinking set the bar high for his competitors.

Click the [TeenFest TV link] to see video of their winning performances.

Celebrity Judges: Julie McKnight, Brett Chambers, Edward Garnes, Jr., James Stephens, III, Corey Parker, and Sheree Betts

TeenFest Foundation is a project of United Charitable Programs, Inc., a registered 501 (c) (3) public charity.  TeenFest 2K10 was funded through a grant by NC DHHS/Div. of MH/DD/SAS and Partnership for a Drug-Free NC, Inc., Family Resource Center/Youth AWAKE, and through private and in-kind donations.