Peaceful Little Corner of the World Youth Talent Show auditions begin this week
NORTHAMPTON — When you ask Gloria Tuperkeizsis, the organizer and director of the Peaceful Little Corner of the World Youth Talent Show, what has kept her coming back for over two decades, the answer is simple.
It’s the relationships she’s made over the years with the performers and their families, she said.
Tuperkeizsis, of Northampton, said she loves the annual event because it gives young people a chance to showcase their talents outside a classroom setting.
The show, which will be held during Northampton’s annual First Night celebration on New Year’s Eve, will have three separate audition periods for children ages 4 to 18.
Auditions will be Nov. 30 from 6 to 8 p.m. and Dec. 9 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the Northampton Community Music Center at 139 South St.
The third audition will be Dec. 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Florence Civic Center on Park Street.
The performers are divided into three categories based on age, and all types of performers are welcome, Tuperkeizsis said, including musicians, dancers, singers and actors.
Trophies will be awarded to the top three performers in each age group, she said.
Tuperkeizsis said that despite the potential disparity in the types of performances, judging is conducted based on four criteria, including overall stagecraft and degree of difficulty, to make it as fair as possible.
There will be no “tie-breakers,” she said, mostly because asking children to come out and perform a second time makes them more nervous. Instead, in the case of a tie both performers will receive trophies.
First Night certificates will be awarded to all participants. There is no fee to enter the talent show, Tuperkeizsis said.
The competition will be held on Dec. 31 at the Northampton Senior Center at 67 Conz St. from 1 to 3 p.m., followed by guest performances.
Background music for any performer requiring it must be on CD, Tuperkeizsis said.
Tuperkeizsis said she rarely encounters overzealous parents or “diva-like” behavior from the performers.
“I can spot a pushy parent right away,” she said.
Tuperkeizsis said she usually gets about 20 to 30 performers every year, but the numbers don’t matter to her.
“I’d still do it if I had only 10,” she said.