'Every Child's a Star' auditions slated for Saturday

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Serving as this year’s producer for “Every Child’s a Star,” Bill Brown is delighted to “help foster the love of the performing arts.” With auditions set for Saturday, the Taylorsville resident is encouraging kindergarteners to high-schoolers to try out for the talent show, which benefits Advocates for Children.“I’ve actually worked with ‘Every Child’s a Star’ for a number of years, primarily in more of a technical aspect, but certainly in helping some of the prior leadership with the program,” Brown said. “So I was already very ... familiar with it. When I contacted them this past summer to give them some suggested ideas that I had for the upcoming show, [I] learned that several of the leadership members were not going to be able to continue the program. So I went ahead and put my name in the hat to go ahead and take on the project.“It is a wonderful fundraiser for the shelter and for Advocates. I, myself, am a performer, so I’ve been performing [since I was] as young as many of those who [will be] participating. So to help foster the love of the performing arts has always been sort of a drive of mine.”Auditions for “Every Child’s a Star” will be held at the Family Life Center of Sam Jones Memorial United Methodist Church, 100 W. Church St. in Cartersville, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. At no charge, each youth will perform a 3-minute audition, highlighting skills, such as dancing, singing, the dramatic arts and gymnastics. If needed, participants must provide CD audio for their routines, all of which will need to be age-appropriate and G-rated. If someone cannot attend and wants to submit a video audition performance, Brown needs to be contacted — ecas.2016.producer@gmail.com or 678-570-8699 — prior to Saturday.Once selected, contestants will be required to sell $100 worth of tickets for the “Every Child’s a Star” event, set for March 5 at Cass High School Performing Arts Center.“The best piece of advice would be if you enjoy performing something, come audition,” Brown said. “This year we are not necessarily creating categories before auditions. Once problem that we’ve had in the past is people feel that they have to fit into a certain category in order to audition.“This year ... we actually have a couple of people who have reached out to me [who] would like to do a short theatrical monologue. So it’s not necessarily just a musical or just a dance competition. Anything that the children like to perform and are comfortable performing in front of a large audience, by all means let’s put it up on the stage.”Proceeds from the ticket sales will benefit Advocates, a Cartersville nonprofit that assists more than 3,000 area youth and families each year. Along with operating Flowering Branch Children’s Shelter, the organization provides numerous programs that aid in the awareness, prevention and treatment of child abuse.Generating $11,159.44 in 2015, “Every Child’s a Star” looks to raise $15,000 this year.“In 1993, Daneise Archer, Terry Nelson and Nancy Hatch devised a plan to help create awareness of the abused and neglected children in our community,” said Jennifer Wiggins Matthews, director of marketing for Advocates for Children. “These three creative minds came up with a talent show for children to give of their talents to help children in need. ‘Every Child’s a Star’ was born and young people were given a chance to perform under the bright lights and make a positive difference in the lives of children.“Several individuals have given many hours, days and months of time dedicated to make ‘Every Child’s a Star’ a success and now a tradition for 23 years. Over the years, we have had a [lot] of performers go on to be stars of high school, college and beyond. Most recently, our 2014 overall winner Kayla Rowland competed on the national television show, ‘The Voice.’”She continued, “‘Every Child’s a Star’ is a lot of work but worth every minute, hour and day it takes to produce the show. Those who need the services provided by Advocates for Children depend on the support of the performers, sponsors, steering committee, volunteers and patrons. Every dollar supports the eight programs operated by Advocates for Children providing services to over 3,000 children and families that so desperately need their services.”For more information about ‘Every Child’s a Star,’ contact Brown or visit www.AdvoChild.org. Advocates also can be reached at ecas@advochild.org or 770-387-1143.