I just got back from the airport as Talent started. I know no one is reading right now but I'm trying to dry my tears by becoming preoccupied with Miss Ohio; Emily's ballad isn't helping! Anyway, first things first...
Becky Minger - "I was born to love you"
I love that she did a brand new musical theatre piece. I didn't catch the show's title, but I had the inside scoop that it's by Linda Eder's husband. It sounds like maybe she has a cold though, or maybe it's just the webcast. She looks stunning and I dig the contemporary jewelry.
Victoria Miller - "Man with a Hex"
Victoria is so cute! I don't know anything about dance, but she seems to be really moving those feet. I'm not crazy about the mix of tap and Tahitian style though.
Whitney Fricke - "Forget About the Boy"
She's too adorable! We usually say don't mix talents, but she did it right with the singing, acting and a little bit of tap.
Emily Pheils - "Lost in His Eyes"
That dress is amazing! This is the strongest I've ever heard her!
Nanciann Strosnider - "Happy Days are Here Again"
If you didn't understand why people love Nanciann, I hope her pre-performance interview explained it; she's a riot! Many fans wish she would have changed her talent since she's done this song three years in a row, but you can't deny that she can belt it out.
Heather Wells - "Via Dolorosa"
We know she brings a lot of energy to upbeat songs but I had no idea what to expect when I heard Heather was doing a lyrical dance to a religious song. Can we say she literally flipped for Jesus?! I jest; it was beautiful and passionate.
Erica Gelhaus - "So andhio La virtu Magica"
A common criticism of Erica is that her voice is beautiful, but the presentation lacks personality; I think she proved us all wrong in that regard tonight! Her opera was very flirty in a fun gown.
Jessica Barrett - "I enjoy being a girl"
I've always liked Jessica; she's entertaining with solid vocals. I will admit though, I still like "Popular" from her best.
I really like the guy backstage interviewing the ladies before Talent; Whitney and Nanciann really showed great personality with him. It's a very American Idol type concept, and the behind-the-scenes note about Emily rushing back for the earrings is what audiences eat up!
Kylie Johnson - Great color swimsuit, but slow down!
Heather Waterman - Sassy!
Rebekah - Smooth and sexy!
Ashleigh Lemon - I think she might want to research what the song "If" is really about! ;)
Sasha Eby - She's so cute, with a Teen USA vibe.
Amber Bussa - I think she gets my vote for best song and voice over; she walked to John Legend's Green Light, saying she hopes for a "green light to go to Miss America." Fantastic!
Ashley Warholic - I like the new pink swimsuit (over the zebra print from locals); great personality!
Kristy Moneysmith - Kristy's height is such a great advantage; she looks wonderful!
Jenna Wilson - Hey, isn't that Andrea Andryscik's old swimsuit? :) Jenna looks really toned and she's always one of my favorites!
Okay, with all due respect to whoever is singing, this Rhianna song was just a bad idea! I know it's a lose-lose situation for the producers; audiences cry for contemporary entertainment, then when you give it to us, it's not good enough. I swear though, I've never heard anyone successfully cover a current female pop hit. It just can't be done! Sorry; sad but true. I do like the cute little goth outfits that the contestants are in. Karissa looks hot!
Guessing from a webcast is always more difficult, but Talent will probably go to Erica. I wouldn't be a bit surprised by Whitney or Nanciann either. Swimsuit is a much tougher call since I was watching and typing at the same time. Heather, Amber or Jenna maybe? I don't know...
Katie Camp - "How do you support your statement about volunteering?"
That question wasn't so great, in terms of wording, but Katie sounded very passionate about her platform.
Courtney Monk - "How do you persuade schools to maintain their music program?"
Wow, she gave two realistic options, one of which dropped the name of a popular NATIONAL program she's partnered with. Great job!
Shannon O'Neill - something about long term health in kids...?
She's always very well spoken.
Ellen Byran - "How concerned should the public be about lightning?"
I love her dress and she did a solid job supporting her platform with statistics, which is exactly what she needed to do to create importance for something many people aren't sold on.
Alyssa Hanson - "What' the major obstacle for young women realizing their potential?"
She's so, so pretty, I can never get over it! She got a little bit tongue-tied but ultimately gave specific elements of her platform program.
Katie Bowen - "How do Special Olympics athletes benefit from the competition after its over?"
Wow, very impressive, lots of personality and very well spoken.
Kristen Haas - "Why focus on female heart disease?"
She gave a nice concise answer. Seasoned and solid.
I think I was most impressed by Courtney and Katie Bowen, but everyone did well. Thankfully, no YouTube moments in Mansfield tonight!
"If you liked it, then you shoulda put a crown on it?!?!" LOL!
I need to go get a drink...