Performers wanted for return of ‘Kent Has Talent’ show

Registration starts Feb. 1; auditions March 23-24; show set for May 23

Let the talent in Kent rise to the top.

Performers are wanted to register and audition for the “Kent Has Talent” show scheduled for Thursday, May 23 at the Kent-Meridian Performing Arts Center, 10020 SE 256th St.

After an absence of several years, the Kent Community Foundation announced Jan. 30 that the talent show will return in 2024.

“We have so many talented performers in the Kent area, and we are excited to showcase them by bringing back ‘Kent Has Talent,’” said Lori Paxton, president of the Kent Community Foundation. “This fun event is also a fundraiser to support the foundation in providing other opportunities to celebrate the arts in Kent throughout the year.”

Tonya Goodwillie, owner of Allegro Performing Arts in Kent, originally launched the local talent competition in 2011. The event had a successful two-year run. Leaders of the Kent Community Foundation assisted Goodwillie in 2016 and 2017, and the team is eager to bring it back to the community, Paxton said.

“The time is right to bring this great event back to the community,” Goodwillie said. “It is a great opportunity for the foundation and other local businesses and organizations to support the performing arts.”

Bender, a morning radio show staple in the Pacific Northwest for 23 years, has agreed to emcee the show. He’s a multiple Best of Western Washington award winner and has manned the airwaves on 95.7 The Jet for the past four years as one half of Seattle’s top-rated Jodi and Bender Morning Show. Bender spent the previous 18 years down the iHeartRadio hallway at sister station KISS-FM.

The talent competition will feature three age categories:

• Youth (12 and under)

• Teens (13 to 19)

• Adults (20 plus)

Preliminary qualification rounds will be March 23 and March 24 at Allegro Performing Arts.

“Talent” can be loosely interpreted to incorporate a wide range of talents (e.g., music, dance, magic, poetry, etc.) There will be cash prizes for the winner of each category and an overall prize, thanks to generous sponsors. Winners will also have the opportunity to perform at local events as representatives of “Kent Has Talent.”

The live registration link will be posted to kentcommunityfoundation.org and its Facebook page, and on the “Kent Has Talent” Facebook page, on Thursday, Feb. 1.

For information about sponsorship opportunities, contact Brenda Farwell at 206-786-1546.

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