The stakes were high for Miss South Carolina and Miss South Carolina Teen contestants as they hit the stage Thursday night at the Township Auditorium for one last shot at impressing judges in the preliminary phase of competition.
Every night of this weeks competition, reigning Miss South Carolina Brooke Mosteller has dropped tidbits of pageant knowledge on contestants before they faced the limelight. Thursday night, she let the thank you notes from children shed visited speak for what was at stake: the chance to be a role model for younger generations.
Thank you for coming, read one childs note over the picture of a crowned crayon stick figure. You are relly relly tall.
When the audience was done awing, it was time to start the competition.
Here are some of the nights highlights.
Rock and roll all night: In a week with a soundtrack consisting largely of songs from musicals and slower-tempo ballads, it was a change of pace to see audience members nodding their heads to some classic rock.
The drum roll was queued days before the winner was announced when Miss Orangeburg County Shiobhan Fraser took the stage. Rocking a drum solo set her apart for originality alone bonus points for beating the heck out of those symbols
Clogging to Queens Another One Bites the Dust, Miss Liberty Kelley Addington kept the rock rolling. Of the many, many cloggers to take the stage in the talent segment this week, Addington was one of the most skilled.
Miss Powdersville Katie Porter played a piano cover of Jerry Lee Lewis Great Balls of Fire and holy moly her fingers flew.
Teen Talent: Miss Landrum Teen Makayla Stark performed the most impressive clogging set of the night for the teen competition, dancing to Kevin Aviances wonderfully weird Din Da Da. Not only did her rapid footwork stomp out the competition, the performance was enhanced by the zany song choice (which sounded like something straight out of a Zoolander-esque walk off) and trippy stage graphics that mimicked an atom exploding with each Da!
Miss York Teen CeCe Hensley added a dash of Middle Eastern culture to the showcase. Belly dancing to an Arabian tune and clicking together zills (Turkish finger cymbals) with elegant waves of her arms, Hensley tapped into a region that hadnt yet been explored in the talent segment.
Tae-Crown-Do: Wrapped in a dabok (the traditional tae kwon do uniform) with her black belt on proud display around her waist, Miss Blue Ridge Foothills Angel Garcia proved her willingness to fight for the crown. Garcia threw punches and leaped into soaring jump kicks to the song Heart of a Champion.
Aww: After the intermission, the princes and princesses got to take the stage. The boys strummed blow-up guitars while the girls twirled around onstage. When their performance was over, the crew raised the house lights as host Brian McConchie of WACH FOX declared Look how many people are cheering for you! The look on their faces was priceless.
Powerful moment at the mic: Miss Pendleton Teen Noelle Yardleys onstage interview tugged hard at the heartstrings. Yardley, who was sexually abused for years growing up, choked up while explaining her platform, which was to help raise awareness for others going through what she did. Ive been through a lot to be here, she finally said after regaining her composure. The audience erupted.
The finale of the Miss South Carolina Teen competition will be held at 7 p.m. Friday in the Township Auditorium. The Miss South Carolina finale will be held on 8 p.m. Saturday in the Township. Catch it live on WACH FOX.