In the Spotlight

Talent Show Captivates Student Body


Olivia McSpadden

Senior Wyatt Blankenship performs in front of the student audience, the crowd waving their flashlights along to the music.

Senior A.J. Lopez plays the piano under the spotlight (Olivia McSpadden)

The second half of the early release day on Wednesday, February 1 gave the staff and student body a break from their hands-on Peddler’s Market preparations. Following their meetings with community business experts, everyone reported to the Ruth Farlow Uyesugi Auditorium for an hour of fun and free entertainment.

The first ever PHS talent show, dubbed “PHS’s Got Talent” by Early Release Coordinator Chris Lindley, featured seven different musical acts with a total of 21 students performing overall.

Although slots were limited due to a short time frame, any and all students were encouraged to enter regardless of grade level.

“It was a better turnout than I thought it would be. There were many crowd-pleasing acts and brave students who performed. Students have already asked when the next one is,” said Lindley.

Eighth grader Piper Frank enthusiastically raps and dances to the lyrics of “Ice Ice Baby.” (Olivia McSpadden)

Senior A.J. Lopez kicked off the event with a classical piano piece. He was followed by eighth grader Bethany Mundy, who sang “Take Me Home” by TAOL Productions.

A duo comprised of seventh graders Vanessa Thacker and Karma Ledgerwood performed a rendition of “Barbie Girl.” Eighth grader Piper Frank rapped “Ice Ice Baby” and continued a cappela despite technical difficulties.

Senior Wyatt Blankenship played guitar while he sang “This Star”, a song by the late Robert Hoyt who was a dear friend to him. Senior Kyrsten Fehribach sang “Bound to You” by Christina Aguilera.

An ensemble performance of “Cadillac of the Skies” by band members, accompanied by a dance routine from the color guard, rounded out the show.

Students were sent a form via email to vote for their top three candidates in the running for the people’s choice award. Ultimately, Blankenship took the top spot with a total of 173 votes. Lopez earned 143 votes, coming in second place, and Frank ended third on the podium with 100 votes.

A portion of the band performs with members of the color guard dancing before them. (Olivia McSpadden)

“I am honored to be the first place winner of PHS’s Got Talent for a tribute to an amazing environmental justice advocate, phenomenal singer and songwriter and great friend. This is not just a win for me, this is a win for Robert Hoyt and his memory,” said Blankenship.

The winners earned points for their grade level teams which went towards the class contest organized at the beginning of the year in coordination with the early release day activities. The senior class is now in the lead as a result of Blankenship and Lopez’s wins.

The class contest will last until the end of the year and the overall winners will receive a grand prize that has yet to be decided as of now. There have been rumors of the possibility of a pizza party or a field trip as a reward, but nothing has been confirmed.