As NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” conducts auditions this weekend in Austin, a freelance casting producer is searching for the best of the best in Phoenix. Although there’s no open call audition in Phoenix for the show’s upcoming season, Sarah Furlong is busy reviewing video submissions — inviting select performers to a producers showcase for America’s Got Talent taking place Sat., Jan. 21 in Phoenix.
I chatted with Furlong yesterday about what they’re looking for — mainly variety acts and performers with an unusual or over-the-top vibe. Seems they’d “love to find a killer hip hop dance group” or another “Prince Poppycock type.” Fans of the show know Prince Popppycock as an uber-over the top performer with a Baroque persona and set list.
Furlong shared other examples of acts they’d love to locate during their time in Phoenix — from ropers to ventriloquists, and drag queens too. Folks who think they’re a good match need to create a video Furlong can screen before the middle of next week. Invites to the producers showcase will follow for those she selects.
I’ve encounted plenty of talented groups of young performers here in the Valley — ballet folklorico and Irish step dancers, circus and acrobat performers, twirling and martial arts athletes, and more. Also adults with diverse talents like animated storytelling with hand-crafted masks.
We’ve got lots of talented young singers, as well as bands, though Furlong says these aren’t the types of acts she’s looking for here in the Valley. But don’t feel disappointed if you’re the proud parent of a young actor, dancer or singer — because there’s another competition coming our way.
The Arizona Young Artists’ Competition offers aspiring young artists ages 15-19 the opportunity to compete in the areas of acting, dance and voice. The competition showcases diverse emerging artists, introduces young artists to the audition process and gives young artists a chance to interact with arts-professionals.
Preliminary auditions by category take place April 17-19 at the Herberger Theater Center in Phoenix, which presents the competition each year in collaboration with Center Dance Ensemble, the venue’s resident modern dance company led by Frances Smith Cohen.
Four finalists from each category are then selected to participate in the final competition on Sat, April 21. Judges select a winner in each category to receive a $1,000 scholarship to help further their education in the arts. Audience members participate as well, selecting a “People’s Choice Winner” in each category to receive a $100 award.
Registration for the Arizona Young Artists’ Competition is open through March 25, and the registration fee is $25 per discipline. Visit www.herbergertheater.org for event details and registration information.
Note: America’s Got Talent is accepting video auditions online through Feb. 15. Click here to learn more. Parents of youth who’d like to be considered for the show’s producers showcase in Phoenix can contact Sarah Furlong at 310-857-8575.
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Update: Click here for a comprehensive audition notice from Durant Communications about talent of all ages being sought for “America’s Got Talent.”