The inaugural Soundoff to Sealybration event drew a huge crowd, including some talented musicians vying for a $1,000 cash prize and a chance to perform at Sealybration in July.
The competition, sponsored by The Sealy News, Sealy Community Foundation and Saddleback Saloon, kicked off Jan. 16 at Saddleback.
Teenage performers Annabelle Lerma and Blane Fisher competed against duo Laz and Katie and solo artist James Stewart. Ace, a fourth musician slated to perform, was a no-show.
The competitors were allowed to perform up to five songs, as members of the audience cast votes for their favorites. Additionally, judges Tom Mendenhall of Saddleback, Melanie Willingham of Sealy Community Foundation and April Towery of The Sealy News tallied up scores on the performers based on song choice, appearance and audience response.
Based on audience votes and judges’ comments, Annabelle Lerma and Blane Fisher are moving forward to the next round, along with Laz and Katie.
At the kickoff event, performers played to a packed house as master of ceremonies, Sealy High School band director Rolando Cantu made introductions and passed out ballots.
The “Battle of the Bands” format allowed the performers to compete, although they won’t know how they fared right away. The competition continues each Wednesday until the final round Saturday, March 9.
Videos of the competitors can be found on The Sealy News Facebook page by searching with the hashtag #soundofftosealybration.
“We’ve got some heavy hitters,” Cantu said. “It’s going to be very competitive.”
The following future performances are scheduled:
•Mud and Honey
Semi-Finals: March 6
Finals: March 9