Kasper Cooper really stepped his game to wow the crowd with his singing. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)

Kasper Cooper really stepped his game to wow the crowd with his singing. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)

Duncan Has Talent is back

Calling all young singers, dancers, and singer/songwriters.

Calling all young singers, dancers, and singer/songwriters.

And even those not-so-young.

Duncan Has Talent is back for 2017 and it’s time to get ready for this special month-long event that offers mentoring and support as well as keen competition.

This popular part of The 39 Days of July festival takes place at Charles Hoey Memorial Park in downtown Duncan.

The Sassy Lion Thrift Store, part of the work of the Duncan Lions Club, provides bursaries of $500 for first prize, $250 for second and $100 for third in three categories for young people. Contestants must be under 21 years of age for these three.

Duncan Has Talent events always start at 5 p.m. sharp. All contestants must be on site and ready with appropriate music/instruments and checked in no later than 4:45, unless pre-authorized.

Participants can sign up during the first week of the festival at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, July 4. The subsequent open mic slots on Tuesday also offer a good chance to get used to the stage.

Entry forms will also be made available online and these must be turned in at least 15 minutes before the opening night of each category.

Duncan Has Talent is well known now for its mentoring: it’s a great chance for the contestants to polish their performances, based on some good advice.

In the Dance category, which always leads off the competitions, these helpful supporters/judges will be Reija Best and Giuliana Mansueti this year.

Everything swings into action on Wednesday, July 12: the first of two evenings of valuable one-hour preliminary sessions.

Then, at 5 p.m. on Friday, July 14, the dance finals will be held. Be sure to get there a bit early, and bring a lawn chair, because seating space is at a premium for this final.

A similar format will be followed the next week, when Robyn Fortunat and Laura Cardriver mentor and then judge the entrants in the Show Tunes category.

The Show Tunes final begins at 5 p.m. on Friday, July 21.

Cardriver is back the following week, this time with Laurie Schmidt as fellow mentor, to work with participants in the Instrumentals category, which starts its two days of mentoring on July 26 and winds up with the finals on Friday, July 28.

BREAKING NEWS: There is a new category in Duncan Has Talent this year, too.

It’s called Nuts and Bolts, and it’s open to anyone, of any age, who thinks they can hold the stage for five minutes in any discipline.

So, all you adults who’ve been just itching to try your hand, get on up and register. The MNP stage is waiting.

Preliminaries in this category run Aug. 2-3, with the final wind-up day Friday, Aug. 4. There are no prize bursaries offered for this category.