Fewer auditions, more talent - Rising Stars focuses on quality in Season 14

June 26, 2017
Elton Earlington (right), last year's Rising Stars winner, has a word with an entrant in this year's contest at Sunday's audition, held at the Ranny Williams Enterteinment Centrem Hope Road, St Andrew,
A Rising Stars entrant is very happy as she gets her ticket from Alaine (second right), who is flanked by fellow judges Conroy Wilson (right) and Anthony Miller.
Rising Stars judges Anthony Miller (left, Alaine (center) and Conroy Wilson at Sunday'saudition, held at the Ranny Wiliams Enterteionment Centre, Hope Road, St Andrew.
Terri-Karelle Griffith (standing) and Rising Stars hopefuls share a jolly moment at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre, Hope Road, St Andrew, on Sunday afternoon.


The window of opportunity for those aspiring to rule the live studio stage of Digicel's Rising Stars has shrunk. Instead of the usual six audition stops for the singing competition, this season there are only three. Executive producer of the popular competition show, Mark Kenny told The STAR that the reduction seems to reflect positively on the quality of talent for the upcoming 14th season.

The third and final audition of Digicel Rising Stars 2017 wrapped up on Sunday evening at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre.

"After three auditions, we probably would have seen 1000 people," Kenny, executive producer of the show, said. "We felt it was better to concentrate the auditions process a little bit more."

"We've actually found that that has worked with the ranks, because we've had much better talent than we've had in quite while. The talent that we had in Mandeville was exceptional. I foresee this season being an awesome live show already," Kenny continued.

"You can more or less guess each year what we're gonna get at each audition. Sometimes it's weather dependent," Kenny said. He said last week's auditions were dampened by torrential rainfall. Regardless, he said, "we still had over 200 people who turned up, which is quite good. We'd usually get about 350 in Ochi, but we still had good talent as well, so it worked out OK."


'Interesting' characters


Though auditions are lessened, producer of Digicel's Rising Stars, Sharon Schroeter, told The STAR that the 'interesting' characters are still out in their numbers and they intend to keep them coming. "We always have interesting people, no matter where we go. No matter how many auditions we've had, the personalities always turn out," Schroeter said. "We don't want to discriminate. It's all part of the show. It's a TV show. Those personalities are ones who also entertain. At the end of the day, that's what we're about. We want to entertain, so it's a mixture of the good and the interesting," she continued.

Kenny, who is also executive producer for Magnum Kings and Queens, believes talent shows that have come since Rising Stars' inception are indebted to the programme. "The other shows, and I've said this before, owe a debt to Rising Stars, because they wouldn't exist without it. It's just a good fortune that the other shows have their own longevity as well. Everything has worked for everything," Kenny said.

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