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LA’s Next Great Stage Star Winner is Chelsea Emma Franko

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After a grueling six-week competition to see who would be crowned LA’s Next Great Stage Star 2012, the 20 finalists sang one more time in front of 14 judges including agents, directors, casting people, producers, and other professionals. This amazing, talented group sang their hearts out and it was clear that no matter what the outcome was, there would be no losers. The judges then conferred and chose five finalists who each had to sing one more song.

Along the way, every week they had to sing a variety of material, not unlike on American Idol. The first and last week featured songs of their choosing while the second week had songs from 1970 and before and the following week was 1970 and after. Then they had to sing a comedy song of their own choosing.

The five finalists were David Michael Laffey who sang “Use What You’ve Got” from The Life, Carrie St. Louis (my personal favorite) with “See I’m Smiling“ from Last Five Years, Tyson Pyles with “At The Fountain” from Sweet Smell of Success, Justine Huxley with “What More Do I Need” from Saturday Night, and Chelsea Emma Franko with “A Piece of Sky” from Yentl. The judges had a difficult task because these finalists were fantastic.

The final results had Chelsea Emma Franko in first place, Carrie St. Louis in second, a tie for third between David Michael Laffey and Tyson Pyles, and Justine Huxley in fourth place. These contestants showed both courage and fortitude (several weren’t feeling well but performed well anyway).

Afterwards the judges and contestants as well as select audience members retreated to a local restaurant to mingle and strike some interviews. The winner gets $1,000 and all five get their own gig at Sterling’s. It was a great contest and Michael Sterling should be proud of helping these young folks on their way.

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