You Tube in audience for online talent quest

By Doug Laing

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A talent quest in Napier tonight is set to go global as entrants' performances are uploaded to You Tube for worldwide voting online.

Talent Upload will be held at the Marine Parade Sound Shell, starting at 6pm, and organising spokesman Denis O'Reilly said images would be online as soon as possible afterwards for You Tubers to put their "likes" into the hat with those of two judges at the venue.

Voting will remain open until next Wednesday, a second night of eliminations will be held on February 3, and the top-polling hopes will contest a final at the third Maori Motown, also at the Soundshell, on February 24.

Online voting will also be able to take place on the last night, expected mainly to be via mobile phones from in and around the Soundshell.

Competitor registrations have seen all available spots on stage taken for tomorrow night, the big opportunity remains for late-comers on the second night, with "two-or-three" spots still available.

Identifying talent is only part of the concept, for Mr O'Reilly said there will be multiple additional benefits, including "cyber literacy."

Young performers will be taught to digitally film and upload the performances, and will possibly also become teachers of the technologically-challenged generation as "mum, dad, aunty and uncle" clammer to vote in the cyber forum.

He said the Soundshell is also under-utilised, and the event would showcase potential, particularly for youth and family based events.

It's in a public liquor ban zone, has a drugs-free goal, with an extra focus on removing issues of "colours" which have been raised by recent incidents in Napier.

He said organisers had recruited several "well-placed community leaders from all sectors" to work towards helping youth become "colour blind."

The team will be headed by former Kiwi rugby league international Kevin Tamati, whose son has featured on the Australian X-Factor in recent months.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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