Without a doubt, each La Estrella de Panorama Mall singing contest has been unique in its own way.
Week four (Final Elimination Round) on Sunday, August 12th brought out contestants ranging from 12 years of age to seniors. Reyna Trevino (TMG/Universal) and Dr. Anthony Luu (USC School of Music) returned as judges and Diana Mera (Recording Artist and Actress) was the special guest judge for the day. Diana will also be a special guest performer at the Finals on August 19th.
Ten contestants competed for a chance to enter the Semi-Finals. The selections for the week were the most diverse to-date and included Pop, R&B, Cumbia, Banda, Ranchera and more. While some competed just for fun with limited practice and preparation, others sang their hearts out.
After the performances, the judges shared feedback with the contestants. As a general rule, contestants should take time to piece together an outfit to complement their vocal abilities. Some had the voice but lacked in other important areas. Of course, "stage personality" was another important factor when judging.
Although there were many strong contenders, the winners were Rene Bernal, Mason Reece and Jose Antonio Pacheco. Bernal performed, "Matalas" by Alejandro Fernandez. Twelve-year-old Mason Reece selected "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz. A very seasoned Jose Antonio Pacheco sang with precision and wowed audiences with "De Que Manera Te Olvido" by Vicente Fernandez.
Just Stylin' (Dance Company) is scheduled to open up the Semi-Finals on August 12. Contestants have the optioning of performing with track (CD) or live music by Mariachi Los Palmeros de Panorama Mall.
Congratulations and good luck to all 12 contestants entering the Semi-Finals!
Jose Antonio Pacheco
Special thanks to event sponsors and supporters LatinoLA.com, TMG/Universal and Pollo Campero. Judges and guests enjoyed lunch courtesy of Subway and Pollo Campero.