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Johnson County Kids have talent

Heritage Hall was packed this past Friday evening as students and families came out in support of Johnson County’s fifth annual talent show, presented by Johnson County Community Foundation. Judges for each category were on hand as students from kindergarten through 12th grade shared their talents as they sang, entertained and danced across the stage.
Welcomed by Linda Moon, along with Wanda Payne and Michael Eggers, Master and Mistress of Ceremonies, the evening began with sixth grader Moriah Franklin on violin, accompanied by her mother on piano, playing “Under the Boardwalk.” Franklin is a two-time first-place winner from previous Johnson County talent shows.
In the kindergarten through third-grade category. Daisy Treadway from Mountain City Elementary opened the evening’s competition with her rendition of “Rocky Top,” accompanied by her grandfather on guitar. Treadway drew smiles from the audience as she walked over and gave her grandfather a big hug after their performance. Gracie Grayson, a kindergarten student, also from Mountain City Elementary, stole the hearts of the audience with her clogging act. Grayson has been clogging for approximately eight months.
Following Grayson was the trio of Lindsey Wills, Natalyi Taylor and Serena Leonard, all from Doe Elementary who lit up the stage as they danced and slid to the “Cha Cha Slide.” Faith Griffis looked like a character right out of the book ”Anne of Green Gables.” Griffis, straw hat and all, entertained the audience with a monologue. “She gets extra points for courage and costume,” said Wanda Payne. Hallie Noble, five years old from Roan Creek Elementary, gave a sweet rendition of “Mary had a Little Lamb.” C.J. Laing, also from Roan Creek Elementary, delighted the audience as he played “Hot Cross Buns” on his penny whistle. Laing was dressed in a long, white apron and large chef hat. Laing taught himself how to play his instrument. Randy Stanley, a first grader from Shady Valley Elementary, was right at home with the audience as he performed his comedy routine for the first time on stage. Stanley, dressed in a cowboy hat and chaps, had the audience laughing as he twirled his hat up in the air, hitched up his pants and started into his routine. Pretty in pink, Brianna Mains, a third-grader from Laurel Elementary, sang and charmed the audience with “You’ve Got the Best of Both Worlds.”
The fourth through sixth grade competition opened with a duet from Brittany and Courtney Brooks from Doe Elementary. The Brooks sisters played their own original composition on the piano entitled, “Chasing D Minor.” The girls have been playing for five years. Jennifer Lindsey, a sixth-grader from Shady Valley Elementary, dressed in a red and black outfit, delivered a well-sung “Your Cheatin’ Heart.” Lindsey has been singing since she was four years old. Tiffany Davis, a sixth grader from Laurel Elementary, clogged to “Boom Boom Pow.” Davis has been clogging for two years, and is a well-seasoned performer as she has clogged in several pageants. Leah Ransom, a fifth grader who is home schooled, walked out onto the stage looking very professional as she sat down at the piano. Smiling at the audience, Ransom played “Waltz.” Next up was Courtney Stout, a fifth grader from Mountain City Elementary. Stout, dressed in jeans, sequins and pigtails, engaged the audience as she clogged to “Bombshell Stomp.” Stout has performed in various venues, including parades. Poised and confident, sixth-grader Ashley Wright from Mountain City Elementary, gave a sweet performance of “Never Alone.” Wright has been singing for five years. Josie Ward, a fourth-grader from Roan Creek Elementary, delivered a smooth and fluid performance of “Fly Me to the Moon” on the piano. Wrapping up the fourth through sixth grade competition was Shea Huyard from Roan Creek Elementary. With an engaging smile, Huyard clogged to her own capella routine.
The seventh and eighth grade competition began with Mackenzie Robinson from Johnson County Middle School. Robinson, a seventh grader, is self-taught and has been playing the piano for two years. She played the “Minuet” by Bach. Brad Harris, an eighth grader, has been playing guitar for two years. The crowd enjoyed his performance of “About a Girl.” With a smile on her face, seventh-grader Krista Warren rolled up her jeans and set out to entertain the crowd with her clogging performance. Warren has been performing for three years. Daniel Ransom, an eighth grade home school student, has been taking piano lessons since 2007. Dressed in a suit and tie, Ransom played a medley of patriotic music.
The final competition was for students from grades nine through 12. Standing on a set of stairs, junior Kelsey Yongue performed “On the Steps of the Palace” from “Into the Woods.” Yongue, elegantly dressed, played the role of Cinderella. Senior Robert Henson played the electric guitar with his spotlight solo. Henson has been playing the electric guitar for eight years. Rachel Ransom, a tenth grade home school student, played “Nothing but the Blood” on the piano. Ransom has been playing the piano for six years. Dalton Slemp, Carlton Tugman, Tony Hannah, Wade Tugman and Ryan Whitener came on stage as a group, singing and playing instruments to the “Tiger Song.” Wearing dark suits and sunglasses, the crowd enjoyed the brief performance. Colton Fenner, a ninth-grader, has been playing piano for six years. He also plays keyboard. To the delight of the audience, he played a medley, transitioning fluidly from one piece into another. Ginny Lay and Vicki Rushing danced to music, moving across the stage in unique costumes with foil-covered boxes covering their heads.
While the judges were deliberating, the Johnson County Chorale entertained the audience. Under the direction of Dr. Peter Wachs, eight women and four men, all dressed in black and white, joined their voices together as they sang “Happy Days are Here Again,” “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore” and “Get Along Home, Cindy.” Master and Mistress of Ceremony Michael Eggers and Wanda Payne thanked the many sponsors who made the event possible. The platinum sponsorships include: Maymead, Inc., Rural Health Services Consortium, in Memory of William Eller, Comfort Services, USA (Bristol) Inc., and Johnson County Bank. The gold sponsorships include: Danny Herman Trucking, Inc., Herman Enterprises, LLC, Farmers State Bank, Elizabethton Federal Savings Bank, Heritage Hall, Inc., Stone Mountain Log Homes, Inc., Wednesday Music Club, Levi Retirees Club, Swan Chatfield, Bob and Minnie Miller, Dr. Don and Carole Tarr, Betty Brown, Terry Holley, Mountain City Funeral Home, Johnson County Community Theatre and Shaw & Shanks Architects. The silver scholarships include: Hux, Lipford and Teague Funeral and Cremation Services, Teague Funeral and Cremation Services, Damascus Motor Sales and Shep’s Barber Shop.
All students received recognition and a certificate for either McDonald’s or Hardees. Each category had first, second and third place winners. For the kindergarten through third grade category, first place went to Randy Stanley. As Stanley walked over to receive his prize, Wanda Payne said, “This young man will take over Jay Leno’s place.” Second place was awarded to Gracie Grayson. Third place was awarded to C. J. Laing. In the fourth through sixth grade division, Shea Huyard took first place. Courtney Stout came in second, and Leah Ransom took third place. In the seventh and eighth grade competition, Krista Warren took first place, Daniel Ransom came in second and Brad Harris took third. In the final category, nine through 12th grade, Colton Fenner took first place, Robert Henson took second and Rachel Ransom took third. For each category, first-place prize winners received $75, second-place winners received $50 and third-place winners received $25.