“Everybody has a song in their heart,” said Wayne Bauer, the master of ceremonies and co-organizer of the Voice of Plumas County Competition.
The first round of the contest took place at the Main Street Sports Bar and Lounge in downtown Quincy on Saturday, June 30.
On that late afternoon seven contestants participated in the first round of the competition, which will see a once-a-month audition from now till a Voice of Plumas winner is found in early December.
It’s not easy to sing a song a cappella, let alone in front of judges, but the seven contestants — each picking hard material with rests and non-traditional melodies — made it through that portion of the show. And then on to a round of karaoke.
Some of the contestants were regulars at the Thursday night karaoke sessions at the Main. Allante Coleman, a second year FRC student is a regular, but it was her first time in a singing competition ever. She’s happy to be part of it.
Veteran theatrical singer Michelle Pfingston of Portola felt the same. She is “a voice” in Plumas County — she wanted a shot at being “the voice.”
Christi Chase, co-owner of Cravings restaurant in Chester, made the trek across the county for the opportunity, giving a heartfelt rendition of the Beatles’ “Let It Be.” The applause afterwards may have indicated a crowd favorite.
“The first round of The Voice of Plumas auditions was fantastic! Seven great contestants entertained us with their amazing singing talents, singing first one song a cappella and then another karaoke style,” said bar owner Karen Powell.
Of the seven contestants, four move on and are now eligible for a “Battle Round” in the fall. The four are “Cowboy” Kenneth Sweeney, Emily Croft and Russ Rappel Schmidt, from Quincy, and Christi Chase of Chester.
The public was able to purchase ballots, maximum of three, for $3 each and about 70 people turned in ballots. There are also designated judges.
Those interested in auditioning to make it into the Battle Rounds are encouraged to call the Main Street Sports Bar at 283-9788. There is also a Facebook site, “The Voice of Plumas County,” which has a downloadable application that can be mailed in or dropped off at the bar.
Those under 21 are also invited to audition. Those auditions will take place at the Quincy Elks Club Lodge, with the times and dates to be determined.