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Slideshow: Mikaela Hansen wins Orcas Has Talent Junior competition
Eleven talented kids showed themselves braver than most adults in the audience by sharing their joie de vivre onstage at Orcas Has Talent Junior on Saturday afternoon.
It was clear competition would be stiff the moment Arianna Dean opened the show in a shimmery sea-green number, rocking the house with “Just Breathe,” by Anna Nalick.
Enchantress Rhiana Lawson materialized in a chocolatey velvet cape to sing a hauntingly lovely, ethereal rendition of “Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again,” from Phantom of the Opera. Daria Stankevich heightened the competition, singing Rascal Flats’ “Bless the Broken Road” with skill and emotion.
Christian Bailey and Luke Bronn in old-school bowler hats had the audience clapping and cheering with Marvin Gaye’s “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” as they made the stage their own, Bailey boogying down with a huge grin on his face. Hayley Stevens on piano sent the gentle strains of Pachelbel’s “Canon in D Major” echoing through the house.
Violet Sturk shared amazing energy and pep, busting out the moves to Taio Cruz’ song, “Dynamite.” Dancing duo Tori Sturk and Jacqueline Figuera sang and twirled to “Magic,” a warm feel-good number that got lots of grins.
In the end, it was Mikaela Hansen on guitar who took first place, impressing judges Ronna Myles-Era, Janet Brownell and Robert Hall with her skilful performance of Tom Baxter’s “My Declaration.”
Performing last, ten-year-old magician Matthew Laslo-White stole the show – and second place – with precocious poise, showmanship and a cheeky grin, along with the help of his lovely assistant (Julia Bailey).
New this year, as the winner Hansen will have a choice to not only perform at the adult Orcas Has Talent show on Feb. 5, but to compete against the high school and adult contestants for the $500 cash prize.