Hickory – The Rotary Club of Hickory has announced the return of its annual Rotarian Idol singing competition, which will be a live virtual event Saturday, March 27 at 7:00pm. Tickets and information are available online at rotarianidol.com.Rotarian Idol

“We are excited to announce that 15 singers are set to compete in the Rotarian Idol competition later this month,” said event co-chair John Rambo. “These singers were selected by our judges for the 2020 Idol competition but, due to the pandemic, the event was canceled,” added co-chair Bonita Ferretti. “Each singer selected last year has agreed to compete in this year’s event, “ added Rambo.

Eric Phillips has been singing with bands since he was 16 years old. “Music is my first love,” exclaims the singer. Phillips loves the creativeness, passion and story telling that are all a part of singing. The Massachusetts native has participated in theater at Hickory Community Theatre and won a Kay Award for Best Newcomer in the production of All Shook Up. Phillips is the father of six grown children ranging in age from 21 to 36. In addition to singing, Phillips plays the guitar and drums.

Sara Smith has been a stand-out singer for a long time. She’s been singing in church since she was little. In middle school she was the only one in her school chosen to participate in the All State Chorus. Now, the Morganton native counts singing as one of her hobbies, along with painting and playing the piano. Smith, a tax preparer, is married to James Smith and they are parents of 7 year old Sara and 3 year old Madison Rae. “Music is an outlet for any emotion that you are feeling.” says Smith.

Katherine “Kat” Reese has a passion for music, including singing, percussion, piano, and guitar. Reese holds an Associate of Fine Arts in Music Rotarian Idoldegree from Catawba Valley Community College and is currently pursing a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education at Lenoir Rhyne University. The Taylorsville native teaches music to students ranging in age from 6 to 56 and believes she learns from each student. “Music is my passion,” says Reese, “and I absolutely love being able to pass my knowledge on to my students.” When not studying for classes at LRU or teaching, Reese somehow finds time to compose music.

Event co-chair Ferretti noted “Rotarian Idol is the Rotary Club of Hickory’s signature fundraiser and gives our community the ability to impact the lives of people here and across the globe. Funds raised go to support local education programs such as the Imagination Library, college scholarships and Teacher of the Year awards, as well as humanitarian and educational projects around the world.”

Rotarian Idol will be broadcast live, online, Saturday, March 27 at 7:00pm EST. Tickets are $20 for individual streaming or $35 for families or groups. Tickets are available online at rotarianidol.com.

For further information, visit rotarianidol.com or email [email protected].

Photos: (Top) LRU student Katherine “Kat” Reese is set to perform in Rotarian Idol March 27.
(Bottom) Eric Smith, who claims music is his first love, will compete in Rotarian Idol March 27.
Photos provided by the participants.