Sac State students and staff to compete in Sac State’s Got Talent

UNIQUE hosts its first-ever virtual talent show


Kelly Kiernan

Gavin Wilson, a self-taught beatboxer, waits to perform outside the University Union Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2019. Wilson will perform in the annual Sac State’s Got Talent competition Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020 on Zoom.

Milan Cabebe

Sacramento State students and staff will compete in a virtual talent show called Sac State’s Got Talent hosted by Sac State’s UNIQUE Programs Thursday via Zoom.

Student assistant Noah Flores said, about 17 people applied to be a part of this year’s show, which was significantly less than the number of applicants they had last year when the show was hosted and advertised in-person. Of those 17 people, 10 will compete Thursday night. 

“I feel like any kind of creative people are stewing in it,” Flores said. “We wanted to give them that creative outlet and so now, we’re showing off the best talent that quarantine has to offer.”

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Gavin Willson beatboxes at The University Union stage on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019. Wilson said he participates in as many competitions as he can to get more exposure for his beatboxing skills. (Kelly Kiernan)

All competitors must be either a Sac State student or faculty member with a valid OneCard according to the University Union website. If the performance includes a group, at least one performer must be a current Sac State student with a valid OneCard.

All acts must be able to perform no less than 90 seconds and no more than four minutes on Thursday with a PG-13 appropriate performance, according to the talent show requirements. They will be judged on originality, quality, screen presence, time and audience response.

Prizes will be awarded to the top three competitors who will be determined by four judges, who are Sac State UNIQUE volunteers. A $100 Visa gift card will be awarded to the first place winner, a $50 gift card for second place and a $25 gift card to third place.

Flores said that most of this year’s competitors are singers who perform today’s pop, R&B, soul, ‘80s pop, original songs and even a foreign song translated to English.

Computer science major Shaurya Chawla will be competing live from India, playing drums to Bon Jovi’s song “It’s My Life” in the final competition. Chawla said he has been playing drums for six years and is a Grade 8 certified drummer from Trinity College of London.

Chawla said he enjoys heavy metal, thrash metal and rock music and practices three to four hours a day on his drum kit. He said he dreams of headlining a show at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado.

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“I’m a huge fan of Slipknot’s drummer, Jay Weinberg, so I grew up watching him play,” Chawla said. “Music has always been a very important part of my life in expressing myself. I’m very excited to perform at the Sac State talent show, and I’m very excited to heat up the stage with my drumming.”

Graphic design major Gavin Willson is a self-taught beatboxer who will also be competing in the final competition on Thursday. Willson enjoys being on stage and said has been trying to enter in as many talent competitions as he can to put himself out there, including “America’s Got Talent.”

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“I really want to try to make some sort of career out of this,” Willson said. “I think that’d be really cool. I enjoy the whole performing aspect to it so if I could perform and make a living off of it or something of that sort, I think that would be awesome. To me, it’s more than just a hobby.”

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Anyone can attend Sac State’s Got Talent at 7:30 p.m. Thursday via Zoom through the link on the University Union’s website.

RELATED LINK: Sac State beatboxer competing in Celebration of Music talent search