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The search is on for next ‘Idol’

DEMOPOLIS-The next Fantasia Barrino, Ruben Studdard, Clay Aiken, or Kelly Clarkson may be right here in Marengo County. One resident wants to find that special person and send them to audition for the next American Idol competition.

Wayne Kirk, formally Officer Kirk with the Demopolis Police Department is in the process of putting together the first ever ‘Marengo County Idol’ contest. The contest will be a chance for all the residents of Marengo, Hale, Sumter, Greene, and Perry counties to come and make an impression on the judges that night and earn a trip to audition for American Idol.

“We have a lot of talented people here and I wanted to give them a chance to showcase their talent for a large crowd, Kirk said, “But most importantly, give them a chance to get the exposure they desperately need.”

There’s a very strict criteria for admittance into the ‘Marengo County Idol” contest, he said. The contestants must be 16-25 years of age, no rap music, solo acts only, appropriate dress, song must not exceed three minutes, and no explicit lyrics or profanity.

“I’m not against rap music,” Kirk said, “I just don’t understand why everyone wants to be a thug now days.”

The fee to enter into the competition is $25 and must be received by no later than July 31, he said. There are over 13 contestants that have already signed up for the event.

“The limit for this event will be around 50 participants and that’s due to the cost of the Demopolis Civic Center,” Kirk said.

The contest is tentatively set for September 18, 2004 at the Demopolis Civic Center. The time of the event will depend on the amount of contestants, he said.

“The winner of the contest will receive a trophy from the Gold Mine as well as travel and lodging to the nearest audition location for the next American Idol contest,” Kirk said.

When he was patrolling the streets of Demopolis as a police officer, he would run into people singing on the street corners and wanted to just have a way to give them a chance to do something with their talent.