Teen Star Santa Barbara Singing Competition Takes Center Stage at Launch Party
The buzz has started for the popular Teen Star Santa Barbara singing competition with the finale set for Feb. 8 at the Granada Theatre, and this year it’s expected to draw a record audience.
The program is all about kids reaching for their dreams, and Teen Star Santa Barbara is “the launching pad to help young singers get there,” Joe Lambert, founder and executive producer, said during a media launch party Tuesday night hosted at Santa Barbara Sound Design in downtown Santa Barbara.
Teen Star, formally known as Santa Barbara Teen Idol, was initially created as a way to help sustain performing arts programs in local schools and across the state that were being cut due to economic challenges.
Lambert was inspired to launch the youth singing competition in 2010, which attracted 39 audition participants, and the first year finale was held at the Elings Performing Arts Center at Dos Pueblos High School with more than 400 fans and supporters in attendance.
Since then, Teen Star Santa Barbara has been rising in popularity and is quickly becoming a brand name known for promoting talented young singers in grades 7 to 12 in Santa Barbara County and helping the aspiring talents to experience their first taste of stardom.
The 2013 finale, held at the Granada Theatre, gathered a sold-out crowd of more than 1,500 fans and was telecast live nationwide over the Internet by California Streaming and reached millions of viewers.
“Last year was fabulous, and each year I kind of feel, well, we could do better. And every year we do that,” Lambert said. “Last year we just hit a home run. We had the mentoring and video intros, and we had celebrity judges coming in. If you look at the number, you’ll see our Facebook numbers hit 1.5 million, so it’s way beyond the borders of just Santa Barbara County.”
The launch party showcased a talented lineup of singers who have reaped the benefits derived from this unique singing competition, including 2012 Teen Star winner Rachel La Commare, 2013 winner Allie Nixon and Rising Star winner Chelsea Chaput.