Successful annual Senior Idol crowns a new champion

You’re never too old to belt out a touching melody.

A group of contestants, all at least 50, proved that point once again during Brooklyn’s annual Senior Idol.

This year, the friendly competition held on Saturday, October 3 at Xaverian High School, 7100 Shore Road, featured 11 contestants, narrowed down from 30-plus hopefuls after an afternoon of auditions in September.

The winner of the event, sponsored by State Senator Marty Golden, was decided by a panel of judges, including Xaverian Music Director Joseph Loposky, and returning Senior Idol champions, Tommy Andersen and Phil Terry. The grand prize for the champion was $500.

Though there were several strong singers that sang classic and contemporary tunes, such as “Bye Bye Blackbird,” and “I’m Yours,” it was 62-year-old Brooklyn native Victoria Keller who was crowned the 2015 Brooklyn Senior Idol. Keller performed “All That Jazz” and impressed audiences and the judges alike enough to take top honors.

Other contestants included Salvatore Dragotto, Roni Goldstein, Andy Gandolfo, Marie Reilly, Gianvito Bottalico, Angel Mendez, Irene Dobronski, Emmy Pai, Ron Divito and Ernie Carrai.

“This year’s Senior Idol was  a success and I am glad that so many folks were able to enjoy the show. It is always a fun night out and this year was no different,” said Golden. “We have some great talent here in Brooklyn, and our contestants in ‘Brooklyn’s Senior Idol’ never fail to wow us with their talent.”

According to John Quaglione,spokesperson for Golden, over 200 people showed up to the event, with many of them first-time attendees.

Bay Ridgeite Carmen Feliciano, who was one of those first timers, had a fun-filled experience. “It was a good time. Some of the singers were really good,” she said. “There were a lot of young people in the audience, not just senior citizens. I will definitely go again next year. l want to invite my daughters to see it because l know they would enjoy it.”

Tickets for the event were $10 with all proceeds benefiting the Xaverian High School music program.

“Kudos to Xaverian High School for their continued partnership and for all they do, working with my staff, to make this truly a night to remember,” added Golden.



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