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Music News - Hundreds Brave The Elements For Elusive Shot At Stardom

Hundreds Brave The Elements For Elusive Shot At Stardom

14 January 2004 - 0 Comments

They waited for hours in the rain, but nothing could dampen the enthusiasm of the hundreds desperate to become the New Zealand Idol.

First auditions for the television series were held in Wellington yesterday - a shot at stardom attracting wannabes from near and far.

Some turned up with mum, some with guitars, some with a packed lunch, some in cocktail dresses and heels, others in fancy dress and some came in thongs and stubbies.

Held at Upper Hutt's Trentham Racecourse, the queue of people weaved through the showground and out the main gates. By 7am the carpark was close to full. A few keen entertainers had even spent the night curled up in sleeping bags.

To help combat the cold, some practised scales while others sang in harmony to guitar. A lone Elvis impersonator wiped the rain from his hairy chest.

But at the front of the queue, there was a hushed silence.

Before long hopefuls were filing back with stories of ruthless judging and shattered dreams.

"I blew it," said Kapene Paki, 17 from Ratana, outside Wanganui. "It was the cameras that got me."

Upper Hutt's Clinton Walker sang the R Kelly hit I Believe I Can Fly, before being told he was on the "maybe" list.

"I didn't know where to look. They told me not to be so nervous."

But Leigh Feldverg, of Feilding, was put out of her misery immediately.

"I didn't get through. I was very nervous. They asked me if I sang in a band and seemed to think I needed that behind me. I've never sung professionally before."

Experience obviously paid off for New Plymouth Girls High School student Rachael Streeter, 17, whose rendition of Celine Dion's Fly was good enough to get her called back for today's follow-up audition.

"I've been so nervous I haven't eaten anything all day.

"But I'm so pleased it's over so now I can go out shopping."

A familiar face was Megan Alatini, former True Bliss member and wife of rugby star Pita Alatini.

Alatini said she was there not to audition but to support her sister, actress Meryl Cassie.

"I had such a lot of positive and negative experiences with True Bliss, I could only tell my sister to [give it] a go. I've had my turn."

Cassie, who had a role in the television series The Tribe, impressed the judges and was asked back.

Christchurch and Auckland auditions will be held during the next week.

Thanks to www.nzherald.co.nz for this story.

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