In 1997, Clay Aiken was a senior at Leesville High School in Raleigh, North Carolina. After participating with his school musical organizations for three years, Clay decided to audition as a soloist at Pieces of Gold, the annual arts extravaganza produced by the Wake County Public School System. They only accepted two solo entrants and Clay was one of them.
Clay chose to sing This Is The Moment and he earned the only standing ovation of the night.
GEOFFREY GRAYBEAL wrote the following about Clay’s performance in the Herald Sun –Raleigh Extra:
`…It is exciting performing for such a big audience.” Leesville senior Clayton Grissom couldn’t quite shake pre-stage jitters. “I’m about to puke from nervousness,” he said…
…Grissom brought the crowd to its feet with his rendition of “This is the Moment,” from the soon to be released on Broadway production of `Jekyll and Hyde.” It was the only standing ovation of the night as the crowd embraced his powerful voice. Clayton couldn’t take all the credit as he graciously recognized Mark…
It sounds like Clay has been a musical star for a long time.
This is the Moment is sung by Jekyll in the moment he decides to test his formula in himself. In the song he says how he waited for this moment and this is the greatest moment of his life. There is a transition in the stage between Jekyll’s living room and his laboratory, the places where the scene happen. When the song ends, he is at his laboratory, ready to test the formula.
On Thursday, one of Clay’s fans found a YouTube of Clay’s performance in 1997. It is exciting to hear young Clay singing with such a mature voice.
On June 21, 2010, Clay returned to Raleigh and performed This Is The Moment again for the Raleigh audience. He participated in Bringing Broadway Home, a special benefit concert for the North Carolina Theatre. The program featured five outstanding Broadway stars from North Carolina. Clay sang many songs, but brought the house down with his performance of This Is The Moment.
I included both videos because I believe it is interesting to see and hear the differences in the two performances. Clay was wonderful in both performances, but it is obvious that by 2010, Clay was more relaxed and comfortable in front of the audience.
What do you think? Did you see or hear any other differences?