And the winner is…

Students perform and compete for a cash prize in 2019 Talent Contest

Seven acts. One winner. $200.

Hosted by film production teacher Allan Hunt and guest judges Jerry Ursetti and Traci Wilson, with help of two student hosts, senior Phil Frangou and sophomore Chris Watters, the annual Talent Contest showcased different talents from Oak Park High School students.

A week prior to the Talent Contest, freshman singer Denham Lipetzky suggested freshman drummer Abigail Daywalt join the music group with him and his brother, freshman guitarist Davis Lipetzky. They planned on playing “Fifteen Minutes” by Mike Krol, the ending song to a visual novel video game, “Monster Prom.”

“We only had three sessions to practice with each other,” Daywalt said. “It was insane.”

During the live performance, however, Daywalt dropped her drumsticks.

“I was honestly so scared that I had accidentally ruined the entire performance,” Daywalt said, “Even if the worst circumstances occur, they are only stepping stones. Always, no matter what the situation is, believe in your group and have faith in yourself your your performances.”

Later, freshman Alex Kunesh did a stand-up comedy routine centered around Hot Pockets, while senior and comedian Ben Sotille discussed a wide array of topics, including guacamole and penthouses. Others chose to do something they felt was more personal.

“[The song] reminds me of my father,” singer and senior Beatriz Leite said, who sang Labrinth’s “Jealous.”

Leite tied for third place with freshman and singer Prisha Suresh, who sang Billie Eilish’s “Bury a Friend” and “At Last” by Etta James. Sophomore, pianist and singer-songwriter Sophia Loparco, who sang an original song, “Today,” placed second. Lucas Joseph placed first, who shared personal experiences, including, as he mentioned, his relationship status being barricaded by his commitment to Academic Decathlon and his mother’s opinion on his 1970’s pornstar mustache.

“I think one-liners have a lot of great potential, but then I always like sticking to my life,” Joseph said. “I like just writing down ideas that I have in a notebook, and when I know something’s coming up, I just practice.”