Eleven finalists took to the stage at the 2015 Your Theatrics International Cabaret Contest (YTICC) Grand Final at The Basement in Sydney last Saturday night. Heat winners from Adelaide, Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Melbourne, Auckland, and Sydney came together to compete for the chance to win a career changing prize package.
Judges for the evening included Adelaide Cabaret Festival Executive Producer John Glenn, Noosa Long Weekend Artistic Director Ian MacKellar, Ballarat Cabaret Festival Artistic Director Graeme Russell, Tasmania Cabaret Festival Executive Producer Lucinda Wilson, Founder and Executive Director of Grayboy Entertainment Graeme Gillies, and Principal Sponsors and YTICC Patrons Ron and Margaret Dobell, who collectively had the unenviable task of deciding on a winner from the talented pool assembled.
After an exceptional evening of cabaret, Adelaide entrant Michaela Burger won the judges vote and became the newest cabaret sensation in Australasia, with Melbourne entrant Noni McCallum taking the runner-up title for 2015.
Contest Producer Jeremy Youett said, “The heats this year were incredibly strong across the board and the judges at the Grand Final truly had their work cut out for them as a result! It was incredible to see so many talented artists continuing to develop and present a vast array of ideas and styles across Australia and New Zealand and especially to see the growth of artists who returned to the Contest from previous years”.
The full line-up of additional finalists included Adelaide winners David Gauci, Brisbane winner Judy Hainsworth, Sunshine Coast winner Jenny Wynter, additional Melbourne winners Bethany Simons with Peter de Jager, from Auckland, Cherie Moore with Robin Kelly along with Sydney winners Jaimie Leigh Johnson, Ben Hudson, Shondelle Pratt, and Dash Kruck. Previous contest winners Sheridan Harbridge and Marika Aubrey co-hosted and performed during the evening, which also included special performances from previous contest winners Nick Christo, Toby Francis, and last year’s winner Melody Beck.