Campus Activities Board Hosts First Annual Westminster Voice Competition


Final contestants Jack DeArmy, ’19, Kellie Kavanaugh, ’17, and Destiney Speech, ’19, watch eventual winner Caroline McEwen, ’18, spin the “wheel of death” to find out which song she will sing. PHOTO BY STEFANIE EGGLESTON.


Campus Activities Board (CAB) hosted a singing competition modeled after the popular show “The Voice” in JCI Tuesday night.

The event was originally supposed to be a coffeehouse, an event that typically features guest performers, but CAB Co-Social Chair Gracie Koonce, ’19, said that she and her colleagues wanted to do something a little different.

“We thought that we could create a more interactive and personal environment if we brought in Westminster students to perform instead of the typical hired talent,” Koonce said. “This of course transformed into the Westminster Voice event by adding in a little friendly competition, four campus-known judges and a wheel of death.”

All students were welcome to sign up and choose their own song to sing for the first round. Afterward, the event’s judges (Assistant Director of Greek Life Nicole Elliott, Men’s Basketball Coach and Admissions Counselor Andrew Green, Interim Vice President and Dean of Student Life Dan Haslag and Professor of Music Natasia Sexton) could comment on the performances.

Although seven students originally signed up to compete, an eighth student, junior Nick Hardeman, joined after all of the other competitors had sung their first-round song. Hardeman sang “Summertime Sadness” by Lana del Rey.

“I was joking with some people I’d met at the event that I should go up and sing, and eventually they said I should seriously do it,” Hardeman said. “I nervously looked for songs to sing on my phone and flagged down the emcee when I finally did.”

After the first round, each of the judges selected one contestant to go on to the second and final round. Elliott chose Destiney Speech, ’19, Green chose Jack DeArmy, ’17, Haslag chose Kellie Kavanaugh, ’17, and Sexton chose Caroline McEwen, ’18.

Contestants then took turns spinning the wheel of death to find out which song they would sing. The wheel had popular songs of all genres, from “Baby” by Justin Bieber to “Low” by Flo Rida.

After spinning and singing “Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson, McEwen won the contest.

“It was a great competition, and the CAB did a great job planning it,” McEwen said. “It would have been fun to see more people who are not already involved in choir.”

Overall, the members of CAB said that the event went very well.

“There was a huge audience turnout that made it a ton of fun for everyone,” Koonce said.

Co-Social Chair, Alondria Buggs, ’19, added, “I feel that this is our most successful event this semester, and I’m happy that I was a part of it.”

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