Students compete at NPHC “Apollo Night”

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Students compete at NPHC “Apollo Night”

Photo by: Xavier Branham

Photo by: Xavier Branham

Photo by: Xavier Branham

Sophomore Devinn Branon gives a rap preformance accompanied by a pianist

Lauren Cole, Staff Writer

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On Oct. 22 at 7 p.m., over a hundred students gathered in Chapman Auditorium
located in McNair Science Building (MSB) to cheer on their peers at the annual
National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) Apollo Night Talent Show.
The talent show, open to all Francs Marion University (FMU) students, featured eight
students who showed off their skills in attempts to be named the winner of the first
place trophy and a $100 people’s choice prize.
The show was set up in an Apollo style format where the audience was free to cheer
and boo as they saw fit.  The acts included singing, rapping, dancing, spoken word
performances with musical instruments.
Tyecia Smalls, senior psychology major and president of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority,
Inc., co-hosted the event with Rafael Douglas Jr., junior management information
systems major and president of Iota Phi Theta Fraternity Inc. Both hosts were tasked
with introducing each contestant, announcing the top three acts, introducing the
first place winner and leading the people’s choice voting.
“The purpose [of the event] is to have fun, promote NPHC, and showcase the
talent,” Smalls said.  “There is a lot of talent at FMU, and this gives the students an
opportunity to have fun.  I wanted to be a part of the talent show to help motivate
other students to get involved.”
Curkroy Brown, senior music major, was the first place winner chosen by a panel of
judges as well as the winner of the people’s choice award cash prize.
“This [singing] is what I love to do and what I want to do professionally,” Brown
said. “This event gave me the opportunity to spread what I want to do. Winning the
people’s choice meant that someone was touched by what I do.”
The audience was kept highly involved all night by the atmosphere provided by DJ J
Watts.  There was time provided during the intermission and after the event for
audience members to get up on stage and dance to a mix of songs.
During the intermission, the stage was crowded with different NPHC sorority and
fraternity members doing various dances and steps that are associated with their
groups.  This also gave the judges a chance to have fun with their respective
organizations.

While the judges were deliberating on the winner, the audience watched an
impromptu dance battle between two contestants from the competition.  The dance
battle kept the audience engaged from beginning to end.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better turn or a better time tonight,” said Douglas Jr.
“Everything went smoothly and all of the contestants were confident in their
talents.”
With such a wide range of talents offered that the event, judges took their time with
deliberating.  Also, the people’s choice winner took several attempts to determine
because the top two acts were both very loved and very popular amongst the
audience.
“I didn’t expect to win because there was such tough competition,” said Brown.
“Everyone was so different, everyone was so good.”
The Apollo Night Talent Show, sponsored solely by the NPHC, will be back again next
year to showcase several more FMU students and their distinct talents.  All acts
which follow the guidelines of FMU are accepted and welcomed.  Anyone interested
in performing in the talent show next year should speak with any NPHC sorority or
fraternity officer.
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