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NOVA Idol Hopeful Shines at Audition

2 December 2013 No Comment

Audrey Layendecker. Photo by: Traci J. Brooks Studios

By: Traci J. Medlock

Pitch pipe in hand, Audrey Layendecker took at moment at her NOVA Idol audition to prepare herself before breaking into a skilled arrangement of “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” That small detail set her apart from many of the other auditioners, showing her level of quiet professionalism and musical talent.

The 22-year old Annandale student is no stranger to music. Layendecker’s parents and grandparents all have musical backgrounds. “I got lucky,” she laughed. “It runs in my genes.”

Layendecker said her musical career began when she saw the movie “Aladdin” at 10 months old. “I started singing ’A Whole New World,’” Layendecker said. “I didn’t even know how to speak, but I was mimicking the song. I think that’s really when it started.”

From there, Layendecker submerged herself in music. She took violin lessons and participated in choir, theater, musical theater and orchestra through high school. However, it wasn’t until the end of high school that her parents allowed her to begin voice lessons.

“I wasn’t allowed to have voice lessons growing up because… your voice doesn’t truly develop until you’re about 30 years old,” she said. “My parents would kind of coach me.”

After graduation, Layendecker went to Italy and studied voice at the Monteverdi Conservatory. After spending a year training in opera, she returned to the U.S., and continued following her passion through writing and studying vocal performance at NOVA. However, it wasn’t until this year she decided to audition for NOVA Idol.

“My best friend told me about it and was like, ‘you have to do it,’” she said. “I was definitely nervous, but I was more excited.”

At Layendecker’s audition, the judges said they were impressed with Layendecker’s clear soprano range. But after hearing the pop tune, they asked for a second song that would showcase that side of her voice.

“That’s what we want,” said Judge Lisa Eckstein, after Layendecker sang “Time to Say Goodbye,” an opera song originally performed by Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman.

Layendecker said the most exciting part about NOVA Idol was that this opportunity showed NOVA’s commitment to the arts and that, through this program, they were giving students an exciting chance to pursue their dreams.

“The face that NOVA is providing this opportunity for young artists to come out is really great,” she said. “I’m just really grateful for the opportunity, regardless if I make it to the next round or not.”

By: Traci J. Brooks

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