A handful of talented local youth auditioned Saturday at Central City in north Surrey for three entertainment spots at the upcoming SASSY Awards.
The 16-to-21-year-olds showed off their dance and music skills for an opportunity to perform alongside Surrey hip-hoppers Freshh and pop artist Victoria Duffield.
"It was a great success," said Allan Baedak, production director of the SASSY Awards, which stands for Service Above Self Surrey Youth. "It's just a really great celebration of youth."
Friends Tyson Mcnamara, 18, of White Rock and Jade Tjorhom, 19, of South Surrey auditioned separately in the competition. Mcnamara performed a soothing rendition of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" while the alto-voiced Tjorhom impressed the crowd with a cover of "At Last" by Etta James.
"If we get in, we'll be very happy, but it's a tough competition," said Tjorhom.
"If not, the experience is good," added Mcnamara.
Other auditioning acts included indie band Tommy Alto and the Senior Jazz and Apprentice Ballet groups from Spiral Dance Co. in White Rock.
The show, going into its second year, will return to the Bell Performing Arts Centre on Friday, Oct. 19. It is put on by the Semiahmoo, White Rock and New Generations Rotary Clubs, which offer programs for youth to help out in their communities.
"It really started to build awareness in the community, especially in the high schools, about what rotary is about," said Baedak of last year's show.
The award categories include youth leadership, community service, humanitarian, against the odds, athletic/ sportsmanship, and performing and visual arts.
Joe Given, 19, won the award for Performing and Visual Arts at the inaugural SASSY Awards. He was one of the judges at the auditions and he will perform at this year's awards.
"It was very exciting," said Given of the award. "It's just amazing to be recognized for the work you do."
MuchMusic VJ Sarah Taylor will be this year's keynote speaker.
About 1,000 tickets, priced at $25 for students and $50 for adults, will be available for the show in the upcoming weeks. They will be on sale through the Rotary clubs as well as local youth groups, including high school dance and sports clubs.
For every ticket sold through a youth group, the group itself receives $10 back. Jim Purcell of the Semiahmoo Rotary Club said he hopes at least 80 per cent of the tickets will be sold through youth groups.