Mission Center to put on inaugural Odessa’s Got Talent

After not being able to have a fundraiser last year, the Permian Basin Mission Center is looking to make up for lost time with this year’s inaugural edition of Odessa’s Got Talent.

The Mission Center, which is a local resource center for those in need, will be looking to showcase local talent with their show which will take place at 7:30 p.m. June 18 at First Baptist Church at 311 W. Eighth Street in Odessa.

Currently, the Mission Center is still accepting virtual auditions until May 21.

Finalists will be announced on May 24 and will perform on June 18.

“We’re hoping to create something that we can build on and that it can get bigger and more exciting over the years and proved a recurring funding source for the Mission Center,” Cristy Batte, fundraising chair and board member at the Permian Basin Missions Center said.

Bate said the idea of doing a talent show came about when they were searching for ways to have a fundraiser.

Because of the pandemic, they originally planned on having a virtual show.

“The original plan was that this would only be online,” Batte said. “Of course, things have opened up and we decided that it’s a great time to get together and let these talented people perform live. It’s just ended up being a live performance rather than strictly online.”

Permian Basin Mission Center Executive Director Hector Aguilar said they are very ecstatic about doing a talent show to raise funds.

“We’re excited to get our community involved and excited to get the word out,” Aguilar said. “We want to create a fun and different way to get our community involved and to give this year to the Permian Basin Mission Center. We wanted to create something different and something fun that our community will enjoy and give back to the Permian Basin Mission Center.”

The winner will receive up to $5,000 in cash prizes.

To audition, people should record a video of them performing and then register online at https://www.permianbasinmission.org/ogt.html and complete the entry form.

“Auditions are really easy in this day and age because we can all upload from our phones,” Batte said. “Auditions happen by going to the website and uploading a video of whatever the talent is. It could be juggling, magic, singing, keyboarding, a band, whatever it is, we just need a video and then it will be judged the weekend after the auditions are due on the 21st.”

Kids and adults are welcome to audition and Bate said to keep the acts “family-friendly”.

“We know that there’ll be plenty of kids auditioning,” Batte said. “But this is for adults as well. We have a cash-prize pool of $5,000 so there’s going to be a lot of opportunity for some good prize money to be earned. We think it’s going to be fun. It might even be a good experience for a band to get in front of people or students who need some experience getting in front of an audience and performing. We know there’s really good talent around here and we’d like to see it.”

There will be three judges at the performance, one of which will be a guest judge, Peter Furler.

Furler is a Grammy-nominated Christian artist and former lead singer of the band The News Boys and has 27 No. 1 hit singles and over seven million records sold.

“We are really excited to have him on board,” Aguilar said. “We hope that bringing him over will create a buzz. It’s really exciting to have someone like him who’s well-known in the music industry to join us.”

There will also be a separate award that’ll be given out called the People’s Choice Award in which voters decide online and is awarded to any of the finalists.

“Anyone who makes it to the finals will be eligible for this award and that will be all online voting,” Batte said. “Once that’s announced on May 25, anyone can go and pay to vote for that person and the person who ends up with the most votes by the live performance will get a cash prize.”

All the funds will go to the Permian Basin Mission Center which is a faith-based organization that provides families that are in need with emergency food boxes, among other services.

“So if they need food, they can call and we’re still on curbside delivery and take it out to them, depending on how many family members they have,” Batte said. “It’s designed to sustain them for several days so they can have that security. We also provide utility assistance so in case families are in crisis, we can step in and provide them with some security.”

Tickets will be sold at the event and Batte said there will be sponsorships available as well.

However, ticket prices haven’t been determined yet.

Whether or not the Permian Basin Mission Center does another Odessa’s Got Talent is still up in the air.

“If it goes well this year, we have talked about doing it again next year,” Aguilar said.

If you go

>> What: Odessa’s Got Talent.

>> Where: First Baptist 311 W. Eighth St.

>> When: 7:30 p.m. June 18.

>> Ticket prices: TBA.