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Flair Affair covers Pueblo Has Talent 2011 (Contestant #24 -Diane)

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Published on Apr 21, 2011

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Pueblo Chieftain article:

April 18, 2011

By JON POMPIA | jpompia@chieftain.com The Pueblo Chieftain

It was a youth-dominated pool of talent, but in the end, the "old school" reigned supreme.

Silver-haired Ed Medina, a personable and strong-throated entertainer, captured the top prize in the Pueblo Has Talent competition Saturday, before a full house in the East High School Auditorium.

A panel of judges, including "American Idol" star Lacy Brown, deemed Medina's version of the Billy Paul soulful classic "Me and Mrs. Jones" the best in a field of 25 entrants.

Medina received a first-place trophy and a $1,500 cash prize, not to mention a call for an encore, which he happily obliged.

Tagged as the night's second-best talent was high-schooler Kevin Cano, whose unique "zombie dance" routine — complete with makeup and tattered clothing — called to mind the epic "Thriller" music video.

Thomas Heath, a powerful singer and notable guitar picker, grabbed third place with a fantastic rendition of Lindsay Buckingham's "Big Love."

Both Cano and Heath received a trophy and a cash prize for their finish.

Noted comedian and actor Shed G was the evening's host, and what a gem he turned out to be. Witty, insightful and supportive of the field of 25, Shed G made the nearly four-hour show delightful to sit through.

It was Big Shed who gave the night's champion the nickname of "Funky Cold" Medina, a nod to the Tone Loc hit song.

For many, a highlight came at the conclusion of the talent performances, when Nashville resident Brown, looking as radiant as she does on television, performed individualized versions of "Ring of Fire" and "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."

True to its intent as a presentation of all forms of talent, the 2011 show — heavy on vocalists singing to pre-recorded music — featured modern dancers, solo electric guitarists, Christian rappers, songwriters performing original music, a "karate kid" and even an Elvis impersonator.

The "most charming" entrant was the suave child dancer Xavier Gutierrez — who did a spot-on version of Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean" dance routine — complete with white glove and black fedora.

Also of note was the immensely powerful voice of Don Berryhill, who accompanied himself on keyboard to the Stevie Wonder gem "All's Fair In Love," as reinterpreted by Michael McDonald.

Berryhill's absence from the top three was a testament to the depth of this year's pool.

Also worth noting was the night's opener, an ensemble production featuring all 50 semifinalists in a nicely choreographed song and dance routine.

Jesse Sena once again organized Pueblo Has Talent, with proceeds to benefit Christian-themed charities.

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