By KYLEE BAGLEY
On April 28th, CCC held their 5th annual talent show, Cumberland Idol. As to be expected, the show did not disappoint. Originally a fundraiser for student senate, the show was well received and continued as a tradition to showcase the immense talent that CCC students and Cumberland County community members have to offer. For future reference, the show is always free entry. First, second, and third place winners were chosen by a panel of judges, along with an audience vote for “crowd favorite.” The talent show had a wide arrange of acts including singers, dancers, musicians, and spoken word. Profiled here are three not-so-typical acts performed at Cumberland Idol.
Elizabeth and Rachel DiMauro performed an Irish Step Dance with original choreography to a song entitled “Gypsy.” Elizabeth is a graduate of CCC and Rachel is a current student. The DiMauro’s have been doing this unique style of dance for over 10 years. Coming from an Irish family, their mother wanted them to have a connection to their heritage. They were signed up for dance classes as children and it blossomed from there. Both women have competed across the nation, winning various regional awards. Elizabeth even competed at the World Championship for Irish Step Dancing. When asked why they chose to perform at Cumberland Idol, the sisters said, “We have a lot of fun doing it and we enjoy dancing together.”
Catherine Chesebro, a perspective CCC student, performed a melodic treat singing and playing the harp to the song “Memory,” originally from Cats the Musical. Currently homeschooled, she plays both the harp and piano. Not many people hear harps played too often and even lesser are those who can play one. Chesebro chose to play the harp because her parents told her she had to play two instruments when she was young: piano and one of her choice. The harp was unusual and she was drawn to it. When asked why she decided to audition for the talent show, Chesebro said, “I wanted to meet other musicians since I will be attending school here next year.”
Ahmad Graves-El, aka “The Lung”, is a lyricist who performed an original composition entitled, “The Spirit Within.” He is part of a hip-hop collective, the KNowmadz, along with his partner Divine Wyze who was unable to perform. The two began composing songs together around 1999 and have flourished from there. When asked why he began writing lyrics, Graves-El discussed how he hopes to counteract the negative connotations that hip-hop is associated with by spreading positivity through his music. “Most rappers today spread hateful messages and false images of success. My goal is for humanity to learn how to love instead of hate and to also have fun.”
Reta Rios and Nate Offer not only won first place, but also crowd favorite. They wowed the crowd with a Spanish/hip-hop style mash up dance to a compellation of songs including “Work” by Rihanna and Drake. Elizabeth and Rachel DiMauro, previously profiled, were awarded second place for their charming Irish Step Dance, adding another win to their previous repertoire. Ahmed Graves-El received third place for his spoken word poem “Spirit Within,” much to his surprise, but not to anyone who heard his enlightening performance. The 5th annual Cumberland Idol was truly a treat to witness and we look forward to next year’s batch of talented performers.