Contestants auditioned for the eighth year of Abilene Idol on Saturday in the Mall of Abilene.
The stage was set up in front of Dillard’s as an audience watched from behind the three judges who scored each performance.
Though each act could not perform longer than two minutes, contestants who move into the finals will have the opportunity to perform longer songs.
Gwynn Haseltine, executive director of Chorus Abilene, said Abilene Idol has a mixture of new singers and those that perform every year during the competition.
“It is a fundraiser for Chorus Abilene first and foremost, but it’s also a singing competition,” Haseltine said.
Funds will go to programing for the three youth choirs in Chorus Abilene, and will help to support scholarships for young singers. The three choirs are made up of children in the first through twelfth grades.
Haseltine said the finale for Abilene Idol will take place in the Abilene Convention Center on Feb. 23.
Judges for the finale will differ from the judges used in the auditions.
The final scores have three components: the amount of fundraising a contestant does for Chorus Abilene will count for 20 percent – one dollar equals one vote, the number of text votes made from the audience at the end of the finale will count for 20 percent and the votes from the judges will count for 60 percent.
First-, second- and third-place winners will be named.
Trinity Skye, a 15-year-old contestant, sang “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen for her audition. Skye said she auditioned for Abilene Idol before, but barely made the cut.
“It’s kind of a lifelong dream to be a professional singer one day,” Skye said. “I got a gift God gave me, and I need to use it somehow.”
The judges typically pick their top fifteen contestants to move on to the finale. When Skye performed for her previous audition, she was placed as number 16. Skye said her fingers are crossed for this year’s competition.
“I was almost there,” she said. “I was one spot away.”