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Residents dance and sing their way to local stardom

HANSVILLE — There was a bit of talent scouting going on at the Hansville

Community Center on Sunday afternoon.

A dozen or so acts came out for the Hansville Huggers’ first-ever talent show, featuring performers who ranged from the very young to the young at heart as they strutted their stuff on the center’s makeshift stage.

All JAT, a singing and dancing girl group consisting of Ashley Larson, Carson Smallbeck, Taylor Wall and Jordan Wall, performed their song-and-dance version of “That’s What Girls Do” by No Secret (a nationally-known female quintet) and “Up” by country singer Shania Twain, using props and head-mic sets as they bopped through the songs.

“We want to be a girl group,” said a very serious Taylor after the show.

As a parent of one of the girls noted that the group has performed in other talent shows in the area, Kerby Criss, director of the Kitsap Children’s Musical Theater and president of Kingston’s July 4th Tiny Town, pulled the youngsters aside to show them the time slots she had open for this year’s Tiny Town show.

Sixteen-year-old twins Nathan and Tyler Hagood, a fiddler and guitar duo, had an attention-grabbing performance, with songs including “Fatback Meat and Dumplings” and “The Real Grand Polka.”

Their performance snagged the attention of Gretchen Lee and Julie Morrison, members of Hansville’s Ladies Aid, who asked them if they would be interested in performing at the group’s dinner and dance fling later this year.

Mavis Goose also made an appearance at the community center.

For those who do not keep up with the world of fairy tales, Mavis — portrayed by Hansville resident and children’s book author Donna Anderson — is reportedly the daughter of Mother Goose.

“Mother told me to dress sedately,” she told the packed room of audience members, noting that the white lace trimming her blue sweater was “from the House of Stenge” and her brightly colored floral hat was her own.

“As every good fairy tale begins, once upon a time...” she said as she started her fractured fairy tale about a girl who found out the prince was looking for a wife. Her “Mirror On The Wall” advised this young girl to clean up her looks, so she hired a designer, personal trainer, dietician and hairdresser.

While the girl was primping, she missed the opportunity to meet the prince, but decided to keep her new look because she liked it.

“The Grout family talent show continues,” joked MC Deane Draper, as he introduced one of the four acts that involved the Grout family.

Father-daughter duo Leah and David Grout sang the love song “Let it be Me.”

“I’d like to dedicate this to my lovely wife who was on the mandolin and my daughter would like to dedicate this to her boyfriend — 15 years out,” David said, referring to his wife who had played the mandolin earlier in the show.

Another father-daughter duo, Richard Grout and Donna Grout, rounded out the family’s performances as he sang and yodeled and she accompanied him on the guitar.

When Draper asked Richard about his musical influence on his children and grandchildren, he replied, “I gave away three mandolins once at Christmas.”

His first song was a mixed number of singing and yodeling, about a hobo who loved to ride the SP train and enjoyed his surroundings, no matter where the vessel took him.

“If there are any single men out there nervous about popping the question, try this,” Richard said as he prefaced his second yodeling and singing number about a man trying to tell a girl he’d like to marry her and live together in the Alpine Valley.

As for Draper’s humor between introducing acts, the audience was lukewarm.

“Oh, give him a laugh,” someone yelled from the audience after Draper tried

his final attempt at comedy with a joke about Bush and Saddam Hussein. The gag resulted in a center-wide groan at first but eventually produced some chuckles.

The Jems, a local woman’s band which has been performing together for a little more than a decade, surprised the audience at the end of the show with an unannounced performance of “Let there be Peace on Earth” and “Put a Little Love in Your Heart.”

Elaine Carey, the organizer for the first- time event, was quite pleased at the end of the day.

“What I wanted was a little local talent and I think that’s what I got,” she said. “I was happy with it. I’m hoping all the other talented people in the community are brought together (next year).”

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