The “MetroStar Talent Challenge” is open to solo singers and vocal duos of all ages, backgrounds and styles who have not played a major engagement at the Metropolitan Room. MetroStar 2017 runs for seven consecutive Mondays, from July 10 through August 21. Applications are now being accepted through Wednesday July 5. To be eligible, all contestants must certify that they will be available throughout the jury-and audience-voted, elimination-round competition.
The tenth annual “MetroStar Talent Challenge” is giving itself a fresh, new look as it adds two new categories to the career-boosting competition. This year, in addition to the MetroStar grand prize and its Special Audience Award (which was instituted in 2015), the 2017 edition of the summer tradition is adding an Innovation Award and a Best New Artist Award.
Returning as permanent judges are the singer and writer (and former MetroStar) Billie Roe; the Metropolitan Room’s booking manager and cabaret producer Joseph Macchia, and cabaret journalist Roy Sander, who has served as jury chairman since the contest’s inception. Top director Barry Kleinbort returns as MetroStar’s resident mentor, available as of the quarterfinals to offer performance-improving pointers until the contest’s finale. MAC Award-winning host Tom Gamblin returns for his seventh season as the contest’s master of ceremonies with the contest’s music direction shared by Nate Buccieri and Tracy Stark.
Since it took off in 2008, MetroStar has launched and redefined the careers of several standouts in cabaret and jazz. Past winners, in chronological order, have been Anne Steele, Liz Lark Brown, T. Oliver Reid, Marissa Mulder, Billie Roe, Lauren Stanford, Kristoffer Lowe, Minda Larsen, and the 2016 MetroStar David Baida.
MetroStar offers a career-boosting package of prizes and professional encouragements, including production support for a Met Room primetime engagement. During the seven weeks, contestants are encouraged to present well-rounded stage performances in which creativity, innovation and authenticity are prized over vocal fireworks. The contest’s co-producers are Met Room owner Bernie Furshpan, Macchia, Gamblin, and Beck Lee.
To apply, performers must submit either a CD (by mail or special delivery), or an mp3 recording and/or link if applying by e-mail. For details visit www.metropolitanroom.com