Meet the 2012 Greer Idol finalists

STAFF REPORTS
Published on Friday, May 25, 2012

Last year’s runnerup and a top 5 finisher, a husband and wife, a singer headed to Broadway and an Army Intelligence student are among the 14 finalists for 2012 Greer Idol.

The competition begins June 15 during intermission of the week’s performance of Tunes on Trade and continues every Friday through July 27.

There were 43 callbacks held at the Davenport Events Hall on May 14, a record for Greer Idol. Below are the 14 finalists and the songs they sang at the Family Fest to earn the callbacks and move forward.

Doug Allen
Doug has no prior theater experience but participated in Greer Idol 2011. He works at BMW, and has been a music pastor. He began singing in churches as a teenager. His favorite artists of influence are Kenny Rogers, Lionel Richie, Barry Mannilow, and Ronnie Milsap. He enjoys old school rhythm and blues, country, Christian, and pop genres. He is married to, Kim, and has two children, Leah and Rachel.

Hannah Clayton
Hannah is a graduate of Blue Ridge High School and will be attending North Greenville University in the fall. Hannah has been involved 12 years with community theatre groups such as the Greer Children’s Theatre and the South Carolina Children’s Theatre. She sings in the Blue Ridge High School concert choir and at church. She has made appearances on "Nightline" on channel 16. Hannah plays guitar and writes her own music.

Wally Dreesen
Wally is a private landscaper. He has a passion for the theater and has performed on stage in roles as The Emcee in Cabaret, Mordred in Camelot, Benny Southstreet in Guys and Dolls, and appeared in A Chorus Line, West Side Story, Kiss Me Kate, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Wally has also performed in several different dinner theaters throughout the United States. In the past six years, he has produced and performed in over seven different dinner theater productions of his own, all of which were to benefit others who have special needs.

Colleen Gaine
Colleen has performed in over 10 theatrical productions at the college and semi-professional level. She has performed as Gertrude in Seussical the Musical and Joanne in Godspell. Colleen participated and won the idol competition at her alma mater, Eastern Nazarene College, in Quincy, Mass., where she also studied vocal performance.

John Garrison
John is a sophomore at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy and has been in four plays at Greer High School – The Wizard of Oz, The Diviners, Galileo, and Little Women. He was in A Christmas Carol at the Greenville Little Theatre, and The Merchant of Venice at the Warehouse Theatre. He auditioned for season seven of America’s Got Talent and went on a nine day tour in Italy. He has performed in over 23 choirs and was the president of the honor choir from 2010-2011. John published a book in 2007 and has a fan base from his YouTube videos, "John Garrison Covers". John is going to the American Music and Dramatic Arts School in Los Angeles in July. John will also be in Wicked in November on Broadway (one night only), and Rocket Science. His album comes out late 2012 entitled, “This is My Memoir”.

Markie Gresham
Markie is a senior at USC Upstate and started singing at age 3 with her family, who were once a nationally-recognized Christian recording group. Markie has performed at venues and on television since. Her most recent performance was singing the National Anthem for the National Day of Prayer in downtown Greenville. Markie loves to spend time with her family and friends and her two dogs, Welby and Jac.

Jeremy McCall
Jeremy has been in and around music his entire life. His father and mother both performed in a Southern Gospel group when he was a child. He has fronted several musical groups and has held two worship pastor positions with his wife, Lauren, over the past five years. Over the past year, he has competed in X Factor and The Voice and was a multi-round contender in both. Jeremy has sung the National Anthem for both the Greenville Drive and the Greenville Road Warriors.

Lauren McCall
Lauren studied drama, television and film at Oral Roberts University. She participated in The Chorus Line, Man of Lamancha, Oklahoma, and the lead role of Annelle in Steel Magnolias, Over the past nine years she has served on staff at churches as a worship leader and creative arts director. She and her husband, fellow contestant Jeremy McCall, also play shows in downtown Greenville. She is a stay at home mom who volunteers at Paris Elementary and continues to live out her childhood dream of singing.

Iresha Morman
Iresha has three children and loves to sing and play sports with them.

Brittany Pridemore
Brittany is a sophomore at Phoenix University and works at Wallace Thomson Hospital in Union. She began singing publicly at 14 years old. From this point, she began participating in school, church, and local talent shows. Brittany appeared on CATS, a Christian Artist Talent Show. Throughout high school she was involved locally and within the Gifted and Talented drama and musical programs. She is director of entertainment for the Piedmont Interstate Fair.

Laura Simmerson
Laura is a junior at Wofford College and has competed in competitions. She has sung the National Anthem at the Greenville Drive, football games, Wofford College, graduations and other venues. She is a full-time student and is in the National Guard. She would like to be a professional singer. She is scheduled to be an active duty officer in the Army after graduation.

Ammadezia Styles
Ammadezia’s most recent performances have been in her church choir. She took voice lessons for a few years and sings all type of genres. Her favorite type of music to sing is country.

Ryan Wilson
Ryan is a freshman at Greenville Tech and has been in several shows with the Greer Children’s Theatre including “Hairspray” and “Robin Hood: The Next Generation”. He has taken voice lessons with Robert Hoefer and has competed in Greer Idol in the past.

Chase Wolfe
Chase is a junior at Wofford College and frequently performs at Spartanburg Little Theatre (SLT). He credits Greer Children’s Theatre for starting him on his musical journey. His most recent performances have been in SLT’s production of Titanic: The Musical and Annie. He has danced with Debbie Allen in Brothers of the Knight. Chase is a double major in chemistry and chinese, with a concentration in pre-pharmacy. He will study language and the culture in China for four months.

 

 

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