The 2011 Rim Country Optimist, Kiwanis and Rotary clubs’ Lip Sync Contest could have been renamed, ‘The Battle of the Love Songs.”
From traditional favorites such as Enrique Iglesias’ “Hero,” to alternative rock band Ludo’s “Love me Dead,” the students’ choice of songs might explain the polarity of the love lives of today’s teens — half romantic, half cynical.
The two-hour blast of strange costumes, complex choreography and rollicking fun raised money for scholarships and delighted viewers, which half filled the high school auditorium and included tables in the lobby loaded with silent auction items to raise money for scholarships.
Most of the songs testified to the contradictions of modern love songs.
Brad Guton synced the love-tortured lyrics to “Love Me Dead”:
I know she drains me slowly
She wears me down to bones in bed ...
Must be the sign on my head, it says,
“Oh love me dead!” Love me dead
He used a sofa, a pedestal with a full moon streaming paper streamer moonbeams, and a friend with a cardboard sign bearing the title of the song to underscore the words as he synced the lyrics.
To honor recently passed pop star Whitney Houston, Leah Brahm dressed in a classy black dress dripping with rhinestones and perfectly syncing to the lyrics of “I Will Always Love You” as a photo vignette of the star played in the background:
That’s all I am taking with me.
So, goodbye. Please, don’t cry.
We both know I’m not what you, you need.
And I will always love you.
Tyler McMinimy channeled a guy’s guy dressed in a suit and fedora when he lip-synced to “Mombo #5” by Lou Bega. McMinimy’s personality shone through in his mannerisms, earning him first in the traditional song category as he synced:
A little bit of Monica in my life
A little bit of Erica by my side,
And so on down the list of the women in his life — a teenage boy’s fantasy.
Then again, Andrew Kofile redeemed hope in teenage love when he lip-synced and used sign language to perform Enrique Iglesias’ song Hero:
I can be your hero.
I can kiss away the pain.
And I will stand by you forever.
You can take my breath away.
Kofile’s rendition also took the audience’s breath away and won him the Audience Choice Award.
For the other acts, a panel of five judges, Kathy Bicher, Nancy Landino, DJ Craig, Su Connell and Stephanie Landers, voted on the best in the two categories of traditional and comedy.
“Our voting is based on the lip sync ability of the performer, how their personality affects the act, how they project themselves, their timing and how energetic and enthusiastic they are on stage,” said Landers.
For comedic category the team of Brooke Collins and Melissa Shannon won for dressing as grannies and dancing to ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” while ensconced in a wheelchair and walker.
Other acts included
“Kung Fu Fighting” by Carl Douglas — performed by Tyler Aguirre and Michael Scott.
“What You Want” by Evanescence — performed by Kaitlyn Roebuck.
“Fly me to the Moon” by Frank Sinatra — performed by Caleb Barton.
“Scary Monsters and …” by Skrillex — performed by Justin Mumm.
“Pokémon Theme” — performed by Dannie Curtis and Gave Hesson.
“Whipped Cream” by Ludo — performed by Dylan Blaylock.
By tradition, the Rim Country Middle School Junior Troop opened the contest dancing and syncing to “We Go Together” from the musical “Grease.”
As a special treat, former Jr. Troup director _ Smith brought students from Alchesay High School on the White Mountain Apache Reservation to perform “Don’t Stop Believing” by the hit TV Show Glee.