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UTC student auditions to be the next American Idol

By Adrienne Teague, University Relations Intern

UTC student Jason Roberts
waits for his opportunity
to audition.

Jason Roberts, of McMinnville, Tenn., wowed judges for two consecutive rounds in the “Voice of Chattanooga” singing competition sponsored by WDSI-TV Fox 61 and the Chattanooga Coca Cola Bottling Company.

Contestants waited in line for round one auditions held at UTC McKenzie Arena on Wednesday, July 12.  After six hours of auditions, the judges chose only 100 finalists to advance to the next round, held Wednesday, July 19.

The 100 finalists from round one stood before a panel of 10 judges at Lake Winnepesaukah and sang for 30 seconds a capella (without music).  Roberts was selected as one of only 50 finalists to move on to the third round of the competition.

When asked about his competition he replied, “I’ve been really impressed with the talent here today.”

Although pleasantly surprised with Chattanooga’s talent, Roberts employs a wise strategy to keep himself in the competition.  He is gauging where the auditions are being held and what the acoustics will be like before he selects his audition piece.

“The acoustics in the McKenzie Arena were not ideal for a soft song, so I had to pick something that allowed me to express a lot of vocal range.  I figured that projection would play a big part of the judging,” he commented.

And he figured correctly! He chose to sing “More than Anyone,” by Gavin DeGraw for both his first and second round auditions. Roberts will be relying on artists such as DeGraw, Mark Broussard, and Jack Johnson to provide him with inspiration and music in his quest to be the “American Idol.”

Roberts will be joining his fellow contestants in round three taking place Monday, July 24 at Sir Goony’s Family Fun Center on Brainerd Road, 6-8 p.m.  Each contestant will be given one minute of audition time. 

Eleven contestants will be selected from this round to compete in the final round of the “Voice of Chattanooga” taking place at the UTC University Center Auditorium, Friday, July 28, 7-8:30 p.m.

The winner of the competition will receive paid trip including hotel, airfare, and spending cash to a city where they will be guaranteed an audition with an “American Idol” producer for the sixth season of the hit show.

idol line

July 25, 2006

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