Galen Boulanger and Dunavan Morris-Janzen (top) will be the MCs for Oxygen Art Centre's first annual youth talent slam

Galen Boulanger and Dunavan Morris-Janzen (top) will be the MCs for Oxygen Art Centre's first annual youth talent slam

Oxygen launches annual youth talent showcase

Nelson residents between the ages of 15 to 29 can audition on January 18.

Nelson has no shortage of talented youngsters, and Oxygen Art Centre is looking to celebrate that with the first annual youth arts festival.

“We want everyone. Any talent you have that’s unusual, bizarre, weird, sweet, whatever you want. You could have a mixture of talents. If you’re hula-hooping on roller blades while juggling, for instance—I’m sure we would be into that,” said youth coordinator Galen Boulanger, who will MC the event with Dunavan Morris-Janzen.

“We’ll know most of the people who are going to audition, so we’ll be able to bust out some good jokes, for sure,” said Morris-Janzen.

Successful auditioners will receive one-on-one mentorships from current and former Nelson cultural ambassadors Bessie Wapp and Lucas Myers.

“We wanted to create an event where youth can showcase their stuff, but we thought ‘wouldn’t it be great if we could give them help and feedback too’. So everyone that’s in the show, we’ll give them some feedback to try to bring out the best of what they’ve got going on,” said Wapp.

When asked what advice she has for artists just starting out in their careers, Wapp was effusive.

“You go! You are so great! Keep doing it!” she said.

Myers agreed.

“This gives them an opportunity to be surrounded by peers, and it’s an opportunity to have their own personal expression. I think that’s really important and empowering,” he said.

Auditions for the talent slam will take place at the Civic Theatre on Sunday, January 18 between 10 a.m and 2 p.m.

The festival will also be a mentored work experience opportunity for the youth coordinators involved in producing the festival.

To audition, you must pre-register online at oxygenartcentre.org.