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June 17, 2011

Shout out to a local girl

Marin Independent Journal (CA):

When she was growing up in San Anselmo with a girlhood dream of becoming a pop star, Lily Elise papered the walls of her bedroom with pictures of her idol, Christina Aguilera.

So when the 20-year-old former Sir Francis Drake High School cheerleader got to sing "Lady Marmalade" with Aguilera on this season's debut of the NBC-TV reality talent competition "The Voice," she was ecstatic.

"I listened to all Christina's music and aspired to be just like her when I was little," Elise said this week from her parents' home, sounding upbeat despite being eliminated from the show on Tuesday night. "Actually singing on stage with her was a childhood dream come true for me."

In Marin, her family and friends have been abuzz with excitement, pulling for her as she advanced through the weeks of competition.

And she had a lot of support from young people hoping to emulate her just as she modeled herself on Aguilera. For four years, until she graduated from Drake High in 2009, Elise was a member of Til Dawn, a teen a cappella singing group sponsored by Marin's Youth in Arts. The ensemble performed widely in Marin and the Bay Area, opening for such name groups as the House Jacks and Boyz II Men.

The 15 teens currently in the group cheered on their suddenly successful alumna, and were recently filmed excitedly watching the show together by a news camera crew from the local NBC TV affiliate.

"There's been an added buzz in the air among these young folks," said Miko Lee, director of Youth in Arts. "To see Lily adopted by her own idol, Christina Aguilera, was very exciting for them. They learned from Lily that you can go on to have amazing success." Read more.

Til Dawn has been singing within our community for years (including at my kids' school) and it great to see that the skills learnt while singing in a community a cappella group can lead to all kinds of opportunity.

Posted by acapnews at June 17, 2011 11:47 PM

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