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COOS BAY — After months of performances by talented local musicians, the fifth annual Soundwaves, hosted by BiCoastal Media, has come to an end.

As many as 20 performers graced the stage of the Egyptian Theatre on Thursday evening. The finalists had a chance to earn the $2,000 grand prize.

The contest began in May with around 25 contestants of all ages. Five performances later the finalists performed to see if their talents were enough to win the prize money.

Some sang opera, some sang country, and others rock 'n roll. All the performers said they were grateful the community came together to watch them sing their hearts out.  

“We used to do the Colgate Country Showdown, and that kind of ran its course, so we opened it up to all genres,” Kristi Rigel with BiCoastal Media said.  

The winner of this year’s Soundwaves competition was Horst Hartung, who performed a rendition of Harry Nilsson’s song “Without You.” Hartung said he began singing around age 5 when he started listening to the radio.

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“Thanks to everyone for coming down,” Hartung said. “This is a great show. They do this every year, so let’s keep it going.”

Over 100 folks came down to the Egyptian on Thursday night to support local musicians, many of whom were their friends and family members.

“My favorite thing about the event is seeing all the happy people coming out and participating. I like it when they perform original music. I really enjoy seeing everyone showing up to support the musicians,” Rigel said.

Money raised by the Soundwaves competition Thursday night went toward St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, to help fund cancer research and treatment for children. The event raised around $1,400.

Sponsors for the 2019 Soundwaves competition included BiCoastal Media, Atlas Edge Staffing, the Egyptian Theatre, BNT Promotional Products, and Bahama Boards. Judging sponsors included Gooney's Sports Bar, Farmers Insurance, and Beez Smoke Shop. 

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Nicholas A. Johnson can be reached at 541-266-6049, or by email at nicholas.johnson@theworldlink.com.

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