While the number of contenders has dropped each year, the quality of talented entries overall has improved tremendously.
Or so says Peter Luongo, a member of the selection panel for 2014â€™s Langley Has Talent.
â€œThe talent was so good we didnâ€™t feel we could leave the 25th person out,â€ he said.
Itâ€™s that quality of talent and the mix of artistic forms competing in this yearâ€™s contest that promises to make for impressive semifinal event this weekend, added Luongo, the event founder and a life-time entertainer.
Earlier this year, 55 people auditioned to be part of the fourth annual Langley Has Talent. That number was cut down to 25 following two days of auditions.
Now, at the end of Saturday nightâ€™s show, that number will be whittled down further.
A panel of judges â€“ featuring talent agent Joilenne Moore, Natasha Zimbaro, and John Donnelly â€“ is tasked with selecting the top 12 contenders.
There will be a fan favourite, as well. The audience at the March 29 competition will have an opportunity to vote and pick the 13th person to make it through to the April 12 finals, Luongo explained.
While a large crowd is expected for Saturdayâ€™s semifinals, contest organizers have partnered with the school district this year to attract even more families.
Every local student receives a voucher for free admission when accompanied by an adult.
â€œThis is a chance for us to reach out, for people in the community to see some of the talent available and to be inspired by it,â€ Luongo said.
The underlying purpose behind this Rotary Club event is to draw attention to the need for a community theatre.
So, this is also a chance for the communityâ€™s future leaders to see and become engrossed in the arts and to begin to understand the need for a theatre in Langley in which to host all these performers, Luongo elaborated.
Awareness efforts during the past four-year existence of Langley Has Talent seems to be working, according to the retired principal. He noted that a joint feasibility study is underway looking into the need and viability of a community theatre.
In the meantime, the competition continues â€“ as well â€“ and spotlights a lot of local talent.
This yearâ€™s contenders include soloists, duets, and trios singing, as well as bands, a unicyclists, a circus-like acrobat, and numerous dancers.
â€œWeâ€™ve been very impressed with the level of talent thatâ€™s come forward this year, and so to will the audience,â€ Luongo said, noting the competitors range in age from a 10-year-old Aldergrove dancer to a 60-year-old singer.
Tickets are $20 each and available online at www.langleyhastalent.com. Doors open at 6:15 p.m., with the show at 7 p.m.
Readers can view a picture and biography on each of the 25 semifinalists at www.langleyadvance.com, search â€œLangley Has Talentâ€