Occasionally, I'm asked by friends or readers if I miss being a reporter.
I did that job for almost a year, and I enjoyed it nine days out of 10. However, for obvious reasons, I would be hesitant to take a step back and do that job again.
The one thing I miss the most about writing entertainment and feature stories is getting out of the office. It was nice to interact with a lot of great people and attend some neat events. For me, covering Chautauqua's Got Talent last year was particularly fun.
While working, I was entertained by some great local performers every Monday night for several weeks. It didn't feel that much like work, actually.
Held at The Spire Theater - known to some as the First Congregational Church - the talent competition draws some large crowds, and with an admission price of $8 per night at the door, it's a pretty good bargain.
The competition runs Monday nights through March 18. I would recommend it to any fan of music or the arts. The most interesting part, in my opinion, is the scoring system. Judges don't determine who makes it to the next week; the audience does.
The judges provide constructive criticism, but they don't vote. Those who paid their way into The Spire get the final say by ranking the performers.
It could easily turn into a popularity contest, meaning the person with the most friends and family in the audience could make it to the next round without difficulty each week. However, that doesn't seem to be the case. I thought the best performers still had a shot to win the competition during the final couple of weeks last year.
With singers, dancers and others competing this year, it will be interesting to see who wins it all.
For more information, call 450-7357 or search for "Chautauqua's Got Talent" on Facebook.