NEWS FROM THE COUNTY

Sold-out audience in Fort Kent helps select finalists for Northern Star competition

Posted Feb. 23, 2011, at 9 p.m.
Twin sisters Naomi and Nokomi Ouellet and friend Ariane Richard, all of Lac Baker, New Brunswick, constitute The Triplets, who won in the group category of a regional Northern Star competition held Feb. 18 at the University of Maine at Fort Kent. The group and three soloists from the regional contest will compete in the Northern Star finale on Feb. 27 in Caribou.
PHOTO COURTESY DANIEL OUELLET |ST. JOHN VALLEY TIMES
Twin sisters Naomi and Nokomi Ouellet and friend Ariane Richard, all of Lac Baker, New Brunswick, constitute The Triplets, who won in the group category of a regional Northern Star competition held Feb. 18 at the University of Maine at Fort Kent. The group and three soloists from the regional contest will compete in the Northern Star finale on Feb. 27 in Caribou.

FORT KENT, Maine — Three solo singers and a trio from the Northern Star competition held Feb. 18 will perform against other regional winners in the finale on Sunday.

Three individual finalists chosen to move on to the Northern Star finals in Caribou included two singers who were voted on by the audience and one who was the “judges’ pick.”

The individual singers moving on are University of Maine at Fort Kent student Courtney Birk, 18, from Millinocket, Indya Ouellette, 14, of Madawaska and Megan Ouellette, 18, of Clair, New Brunswick. Birk was picked by the judges.

New to the competition this year was the group competition. The finalist in this category, which was voted on solely by the audience members, were The Triplets, a singing group composed of 14-year-old twins Naomi and Nokomi Ouellet and 12-year-old Ariane Richard from Lac Baker, New Brunswick.

The 2010 event, then known as Aroostook Idol, was the first in which singers from New Brunswick were invited to take part in the competition. The result last year was a win for 12-year-old Isabelle Pelletier of St. Jacques, New Brunswick. This year’s Fort Kent show saw two Canadian acts advance to the Caribou finale.

The parking lot at Fox Auditorium at the University of Maine at Fort Kent was packed on Friday, Feb. 18, with music enthusiasts there to attend the competition.

“In the seven years we have been doing this, Fort Kent has always sold out,” said co-organizer and co-host Jason Parent. “There were 450 people packed in the Fox Auditorium that night.”

With the number of phone calls received the two days leading up to the event, as well as the people who were turned away at the door, said Parent, at least 200 more tickets could have been sold had there been space in the auditorium.

The Aroostook Idol-Northern Star competition has been involved with the United Way of Aroostook since its start seven years ago. The events held in Houlton, Presque Isle, Fort Kent and Caribou have raised more than $200,000, said Claudia Stevens, United Way of Aroostook executive director and co-host of the events.

The winning singers from regional contests in Houlton, Presque Isle and Fort Kent will compete for the Northern Star 2011 title on Feb. 27 at the Caribou Performing Arts Center.

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