College of DuPage Hosts Fifth Annual Student Talent Competition

By: Mike McKissack

COD's Got Talent Winner Article Image

College of DuPage student Nicolette Pilalis, a first-year psychology major from Roselle, took the first-place award for a choreographed dance performed to a spoken word recording of her poem “Begin With Love” at the fifth annual student talent show competition “COD’s Got Talent,” held virtually on Facebook Live May 13.

View a video of the competition.

Hosted by the McAninch Arts Center Director Diana Martinez, the virtual event demonstrated a substantial uptick in engagement, getting more than 1,700 views during the initial broadcast and a total of nearly 4,000 views to date. The event gained more than 2,700 reactions, comments and shares. In addition, spectators donated nearly $300 during the competition for the College’s COVID-19 Student Relief Fund.

The second-place award went to first-year graphic design student Ayla Walsh (Wheaton) for her speed painting demonstration. Third place was awarded to both business management student Julie Bawm (Thingdawlte, Bangladesh) for a spoken word performance of her original poem "Be Hopeful, Be Humble," and social work and theater student Rhealee Fernandez (Aurora) for her performance of "Chandelier" by Sia.

Winners were selected based on a variety of factors, including choice of selection, presentation, talent and skill, enthusiasm and presentation. Judges were Theater Professors Amelia Barrett and Connie Canaday Howard, Music Professor Lee Kesselman and Dance Adjunct Faculty member Donna Douglas.

Additional performances included Grace Biernacki (Bloomingdale) dancing to "I Hope You  Dance" by Lee Ann Womack; Emily Emilia Chromzack (Glendale Heights) performing her original song "Maiden Days;” Jared Del Rosario (Woodridge) dancing to "Lemon" by N.E.R.D ft. Drake and Rihanna; Rachel Irwin with her fire dance performance; Nathan Tokar (Naperville) for his beatboxing performance; and Francisco Leandro Santos  Silva (Sena Madureira Acre, Brazil) for his breakdance performance to "It's Tricky" by RUN-DMC

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