Young performers for the Kanawha Valley who wish to compete for cash prizes and more in a new youth talent showcase, Rising Stars: Stand Up and Shine, need to submit auditions on-line by noon this Saturday, June 16.  The final competition will be held the following Saturday, June 23, at 11 a.m. at the Charleston Town Center Mall with live performances at Macy’s Court.

The talent competition for youth (ages 12-19) is being launched as a partnership of RESET, the Charleston Police Department (CPD), the Partnership of African American Churches (PAAC) and FestivALL Charleston to promote performance artists among young people in the community.  Performances by individuals or groups in music, song, dance, spoken word or other performance art are welcome by registering through the FestivALL website,, and submitting a video audition of up to three minutes.

“As part of RESET’s mission to strengthen relationships within the community and with the Charleston Police Department, we’ve been developing a new talent showcase and competition to give youth in our city and surrounding area a chance to come together, have fun and shine a spotlight on their talents,” said Rev, Roberta Smith, who chairs RESET and the Charleston Black Ministerial Alliance. “We want to feature our youth through song, music, dance and the spoken word, and we have some pretty good prizes for the top performers.”

The winner of the competition will receive a $150 credit card, a coaching session with a professional artist in his/her/their area of performance, and invitations to perform during Charleston’s Independence celebration on July 3, Multi-Fest in August and the CPD’s Powerama event in October.  The June 23 event also will be live-streamed to showcase all participants.

Other community partners for the new event include the Charleston Town Center, Tgraphics, West Virginia State University EDC and WVSU Extension Service.

For more information: Rev. Roberta Smith, Chair of RESET and CBMA, 304-549-2332

Brittany Javins, FestivALL Charleston, 304-470-0489

Tiffany Plear, Partnership of African American Churches, 304-768-7688

Sgt. Doug Paxton, Charleston Police Department, 304-348-6400

Rod Blackstone, Mayor’s Office, 304-348-8174