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Phoenix of diverse talent steadily rising out of Chicago’s negative reputation

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Talent Showcase

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“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost, that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Amidst all of the tragic reports of gun violence in Chicago, a great deal of good has truly emerged. The Discovery Entertainment Series weekly talent performance showcase – brainchild of West-side entertainment producer and comedian Kevin Fuller, founder of HOST 1 Entertainment – has kicked-off within recent weeks and continues to upgrade in diversity of talent.

Friday, April 25 will mark Discovery’s third week in showcasing talented entertainers from Illinois as well as Indiana who rap, sing, dance and perform spoken word poetry. Fuller, the host and emcee, will undoubtedly bring the funny, as ribbing showcase performers, judges as well as the audience is standard protocol.

Tomorrow night's showcase will be held at Captain Curt’s BBQ – located at 8206 S. Cottage Grove Avenue, Chicago, IL. Future shows will be relocated after following tomorrow night's performance. No line-up has been provided as of yet for tomorrow, but if the preceding two weeks are any indication of talent, expect the third installment to bring the charm and excitement only weekend recreation can deliver.

During the Friday, April 18 showcase, Captain Curt diners and audience members were treated to being co-hosted by celebrity Eden Elyse Strong of Starz Network’s BOSS series, starring Kelsey Grammer. Strong demonstrated her abilities in singing, dancing, and even delivered a powerful spoken word public service announcement of sorts against bullying. Together, Strong and her mother Carolyn – who is also an anti-bullying advocate and an author in her own right – founded BulliesStink.com, an organization that offers expert anti-bullying support and workshops and other trainings for students, schools and parents.

The April 18th Discovery showcase also brought the return of Tim Jackson, a singer, songwriter and musician with the anticipated Summer 2014 sexy ballad “Ooh.” Jackson may sound a lot like John Legend, but Jackson’s talent, stage presence and networking will undoubtedly make him a legend in his own right. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait until Friday’s Discovery series’ showcases to see him. You can also catch Jackson, along with his accomplished dynamo percussionist Whitney McDaniel, performing weekly on Thursdays at the Velvet Lounge, located at 67 E. Cermak Road.

Be sure to come out Thursday, April 24 to support his jam good music tonight at CRAVE, located at 1250 S. Michigan Avenue, from 7:00 pm to 10:00 p.m.

It was a special treat to see Jackson share a stage and perform bits of R&B favorites with Spike Rebel, noted music producer and branding jingle-maker. Spoken word artist Dawi really set the bar with his performance – which he claimed his love of poetry was inspired by his mother – that uplifted the black woman.

The April 18th performance was judged by local celebrity panelist Debra Hampton, model and CEO of Paradise Productions – an organization that specializes in fashion design and modeling. Phil Najieb, photojournalist and Exhibit Chairman of the Chicago Alliance of African-American Photographers also acted as local celebrity panelist.

Gloria “Glow” Oliver-Walker returned from the first week’s showcase, again, wowing the crowd and judges belting out the sultry Chaka Khan tune "Smoking Room." Glow, Strong and Jackson proved to be the night’s highlight performances with the highest amount of points from the judges.

The Discovery Entertainment Series performances will be held every Friday at 7:00 p.m., with the final showcase on Friday May 23. Tomorrow night’s performance will be the last performance held at Captain Curt’s BBQ, located at 8206 S. Cottage Grove Avenue, Chicago, IL 60619. Call either 773-747-7017 or 773-302-2633, or visit www.facebook.com/HOST1Entertainment to confirm future weekly locations.

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