Nov 072005
Authors: Julie Abiecunas

Friday night, student composers had a chance to shine in the first ever OriginIdol competition held in the Ramskeller.

To compete in the event, students went through a round of preliminaries and wrote two songs they sang at the competition. Only five singers competed in the competition for $500 worth of recording time, donated by Krueger Audio Productions.

"Everyone was so talented," said emcee Kaylie Monaghan, freshman biomedical sciences major. "It really is too bad they couldn't all just make it here."

The five that did make it to the competition exhibited great variety in their performances.

Such was the comical performance put on by sophomore liberal arts major Rocky Giarratano. While Giarratano arguably hit a few bumps during his performance, including breaking his guitar string and forgetting the lyrics to his songs, each time he overcame it, gaining a few laughs in the process.

While Giarratano laughed off his troubles on stage, other competitors said singing their original piece on stage left them feeling exposed.

"I think it's definitely more of a risk," said Kaitlin Guidarelli, English and Spanish education major. "But it's a lot more intimate and it's more yourself."

Performances ranged from the serious undertones of Guidarelli's "apology" to the comical performance by Giarratano, to the heartfelt performance that ultimately won the competition put on Kristin Benshoof, senior natural resources recreation and tourism major. Benshoof stole the hearts of the audience with the songs, "Anything to Say" and "North."

During the song "North" the whole room was silent as Benshoof soulfully sang, "There's so much for me I may never see/No regrets for me/ I'm going North."

Benshoof, however, denies sharing the meaning behind her lyrics.

"I have this thing where I refuse to share what my songs are about," Benshoof said. "Everyone comes up with their own meaning for songs, and I don't want to wreck what their meaning might be for one of my songs."

While Benshoof is looking forward to heading to the studio for the first time, being the next Britney Spears is the last thing on her list of things to do.

"I wouldn't want to be a complete rock star. I don't think I could handle all that stuff." Benshoof said. "I like having my privacy too much."

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