Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.
Send GK Your Question »
Why No More Talent from Towns under Two Thousand?
June 2, 2003 |
Has PHC abandoned the annual content for Talent from Towns under Two Thousand? It was one of my favorites. If so, did you conclude that you've exhausted the talent pool or did something more pedestrian such as budget kill the concept?
Little Rock, Arkansas
David, the Talent from Towns Under Two Thousand is taking a breather while we try to figure out how to do it. We want to put on an amateur contest and some years we've succeeded but we felt the contest was starting to getting away from us, and an element of ambitious professionalism was slipping in, which isn't the spirit we're looking for. It's difficult to separate one from the other ---- people making music for fun, people with an eye toward the main chance ---- but I felt we needed to preserve the difference. How to do it? I don't know. And then there's the problem of child entrants: they always win. And then there's the job of weeding out six contestants from a thousand audition tapes, which is an arduous task for sensitive people who hate to say No. But I really hope to bring back the contest in some other form. It's a show that listeners seemed to like a lot, because the talent was drawn from their ranks and had such a sweet spirit about them. But doggone it, David, anytime you put a 13-year-old girl singing "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" in front of our audience, they're going to vote for her. It's human nature. My latest idea is that we change it to a contest for Family Talent. Musical groups of two or more people related to each other.