By Victoria Remley
Youngstown State University’s talent show is aiming to produce show-stopping acts, and vocal surgery did not stop Jenny Zamis, a senior general studies major, from auditioning Feb. 21.
Zamis, or “Jenny from the Block” to some, said performing means everything to her. There is nothing better for Zamis than expressing herself musically.
“Something about artistry makes it so much easier to express me, myself, my emotions,” she said. “It makes mental health a lot easier to control in general for me.”
Zamis sings all day, every day, often annoying her roommates. She originally studied vocal performance when she arrived at YSU, and during her senior year of high school, she performed in musicals, plays and four different choirs, which overworked her voice.
As a top soprano, Zamis sang high notes at full force in all choirs she participated in, but the full force was just too much.
“I got surgery on my vocal cords because I had a cyst,” she said. “I wasn’t allowed to even practice. I couldn’t talk for months and then I wasn’t allowed to sing for about a year at all.”
Upon arriving at YSU, Zamis could not pursue her passion to be a vocal performance major because of the cyst. She changed her major to special education and decided to finish out her degree.
At YSU’s Got Talent in March, Zamis will be performing “Bad Habits” by Maxwell.
Briana Dent, a freshman psychology major, performs to inspire people, and said she feels like this generation needs more performers and people being themselves.
Dent will be performing “Chun-Li” by Nicki Minaj at the talent show.
“It’s just a way of self-expression and helping others and letting them know it’s OK to express themselves as well,” she said.
The art of rapping allows Dent to be herself and put her whole heart into her craft. She said when someone raps, they get to be themselves, put their hearts into it and show everyone else their passion.
“I feel like it keeps me going,” she said.
Sarah Burger, president of the American Marketing Association and a junior international business major, said YSU’s Got Talent is similar to “America’s Got Talent.”
“It’s just a really fun, family-friendly event,” Burger said.
YSU students at the event will be supporting their fellow students and will have the chance to meet and converse with the judges, which include YSU president Jim Tressel and Eddie Howard, YSU’s vice president of student affairs. The third judge remains unknown.
The talent show is one of the American Marketing Association’s biggest fundraisers. The Association aims to involve the entire YSU campus in their events.
All auditions will take place in Kilcawley Center on Feb. 28 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in room 2067, March 4 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in room 2069, March 5 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. in room 2069 and March 7 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Stambaugh Room.
YSU’s Got Talent will be held on March 20 at 7 p.m. in the Chestnut Room of Kilcawley Center.
The winner of YSU’s Got Talent will collect $150. The second place winner and the recipient of the viewer’s choice will collect $100.