‘Apollo’ successful despite starting glitches

Stephanie Toone

With a late start and and a chorus of boos for the first performer, Showtime at the Apollo had a shaky beginning.

But as the event progressed, the following 14 acts kept the crowd’s attention.

The Sandman, played by Elizabethtown senior Kristina Covington, kept the audience entertained, yanking performers off the stage when they were booed.

The Black Student Alliance sponsored Showtime at the Apollo at DUC Theater Saturday night. It was a version of the television show that originated in Harlem, N.Y. The audience members were the judges, and the prize was $200.

Louisville junior Patricia Weaver, president of the BSA, said she got the idea for having the Apollo-type show at Western from the University of Kentucky.

“It’s a new show to get some funds and get our name out there,” Weaver said.

Before the show started, Weaver’s main concern was just filling the seats.

The contestants had other things on their minds.

“I’m nervous, no doubt,” Louisville freshman Cecil Kirby said.

But he was also excited about the opportunity to rap. Kirby said Saturday’s show could do a lot for his career.

“I love music and I love to rap,” he said. “I think this will be a good start for me.”

Kirby said his main focus was to get recognition from his performance.

“The $200 will go far, but gettin’ known will go further,” Kirby said.

Bowling Green resident Nicolas Guzman, a worker at Garrett food court, had greater aspirations than money or name recognition.

“My main objective is to praise and glorify my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” he said.

Guzman said he was nervous about singing his Christian solo in front of so many people, even after the performance. But he also said he enjoyed it.

By the end of the night, four of the 15 acts were booed off the stage, escorted by the Covington.

The grand prize winner was Str8 Butta, a rap group comprised of Russellville High School juniors Tierra Evans and Damien Terry.

Evans said she had high hopes before the beginning of the show.

“I feel we’re gonna do good,” she said.

Terry said he thought the experience would help Str8 Butta improve. He said he also learned a lot.

“[I] gotta accept criticism and they will boo you,” Terry said.

Paducah sophomore Emily Hovekamp said she enjoyed the singing. She said she thought Nashville sophomore Shenita Williams should have won.

“I didn’t like the rapping because you couldn’t hear it well … She had a much better voice,” Hovekamp said.

Nashville freshman Mandi Wansley said she thought the show was pretty good, but she would have like more variety.

“I was expecting it to be more funny,” she said.

Wansley said she attended the event to see who would perform.

“I just wanted to see who had the nerves to come out not knowing whether they would get cheered or booed.”

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