Bobcats sing for babies

By Jenna Wilson
While we were far from the American Idol Studios, OU Idol brought Ohio University students together to sing for a good cause. In honor of Prematurity Awareness Month, which is the month of November, our March of Dimes student organization, with the help of an event planning class and communication's club, hosted a singing competition to heighten awareness for premature birth and raise money for the March of Dimes.

Twenty-six students auditioned for the OU Idol competition on the Athens campus at an open audition. Contestants paid a $10 entry fee to benefit the March of Dimes and sang 60 to 90 seconds a cappella for the auditions. After each performance, the judges provided feedback to each contestant. At the end of the auditions the Top 10 contestants were announced, and then a surprise two more contestants were added in to make a Top 12. The Top 12 contestants advanced to the OU Idol Finals. During the Finals Round, contestants performed their entire song and were critiqued by three, qualified judges imitating Randy, Simon and Paula. A Public Vote accounted for the score of the "fourth judge." At the end of the night, the Top 5 contestants were announced, each receiving $25 to a local hair salon.

Aaron Cox was announced as the winner of OU Idol, winning a prize package worth over $1,000! Aaron sang John Mayer's "I Don't Trust Myself with Loving You" while playing acoustic. He won several gift certificates from around Athens, Ohio, including, a $150 gift certificate to a local hair salon, a gift basket and a three song demo recording CD with LeVeck Entertainment and Production.

OU Idol raised $700 for the March of Dimes and received a great deal of media coverage. A local newspaper, "The Athens News," even gave OU Idol the entire front page! It was a fun show and was well supported by the community. Singers were able to showcase their talent and we were able to raise funds and heighten awareness for all babies during Prematurity Awareness Month.