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Brooklyn College Got Talent

Janine Vitiello stands before a panel of judges remarking on her performance. PHOTO/ M.A. Rahman

By Marcus Ayala

Published: May 8th, 2019

WBCR occupied the Bedford Lounge in SUBO to bring “Brooklyn College Got Talent.” The event was designed to showcase Brooklyn College and its diversity with talents ranging from poetry, rapping, singing, and comedy.

A talent show is nothing without its judges and hosts. The host for the night was, Ivy Rivera of BET. The judges for the event were DJ Sure of Power 105.1, Rich Dollaz of VH1, and Theo Brown of eOne. Besides the judges, there were extra incentives with the winner getting a chance to win $5,000 at CUNY got talent.

Rodney Budd of Thotpack was the opening act. Budd doesn’t attend Brooklyn College. When asked about the judges he expressed how he liked that they gave constructive criticism without hurting feelings. Budd wasn’t an official part of the contest so the judges didn’t evaluate him. “When I was performing they wasn’t judging me because I was the opening act.” He felt like they could of still gave him feedback.” He still didn’t get discouraged and supported the rest of the talents.

The first official act of the night was rapper Khywan Doe. Doe received more praise for this second song he performed for the crowd. The judges said it was “less beat and more rap driven.”

Destini Donald, a transfer student in her second year preformed her raps early in the contest. She used her songs originally to lift her spirits through the tough times. She made that upbeat even if she wasn’t in the best mind frame. Her performance went as planned, she even admittedly added an extra acapella. The judges appreciated her performance. “Your spitting is crazy; I can tell you’re from Brooklyn.” All the judges agreed that she had talent.

Shaquana Henry, a double major in Business Administration and English used her poetic skills to win over the crowd. “I was going to go political, then pop culture.” She did with her first poem “Locker room talk” being about the president and the times we live in, which connected with the crowd because of their disdain toward Trump. She drew the crowd in with her second poem also centered around Bobby Shmurda.

Kenyatta LeSeur, a master student with an Industrial/Organizational Psychology major and a concentration of group processes gave his say on the event. He believes the “judges were trying to be very objective. Their trying to take everything into consideration.”

When asked about the turnout, “I did not expect to see this many people. Given the amount of chairs, they were expecting a big turnout.” He was one of the many that came to support his friends and fellow students.

Sharon Davis, a double major in History and Education and Vice President of Woman of color gave her take on the event. “This is an opportunity to show how diverse we really are as a student base because we have students of all ethnic groups here right now.”

A singer that caught the judges eye was Janine Vitiello. Vitiello is a sophomore studying Television and Radio. “It made my whole life because I’ve always pictured myself singing on American Idol and having Simon Cowell judge me.”

The judges believed “All it takes is one good song.” They explained how she had the voice and she needs the perfect song to showcase it.

Vitiello’s mother expressed how her daughter had the drive from a young age. How daughter believed she was going to a star. “She’s reaching for the stars and she’s never stopping.”

Some other acts from the night included comedian McFredy Antoine, rapper Val Johnson and the eventual winner rapper Derrick Livingston (D-Stone). Livingston got the judges on their feet, including Theo Brown who was rapping along. He’s going to have the chance to win the grand prize.

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