It is difficult enough to sing Mozart’s “Queen of the Night” aria once.
But when your microphone is off and you have to come back on the stage to sing it again, anyone might be forgiven if she can’t quite pull it off.
That wasn’t the case, however for Alex Mather at the Miss Clatsop County Scholarship Program Saturday night.
When it was her turn to perform her talent in front of the judges and the audience, the Astoria High School senior sang the “Magic Flute” piece to near perfection. Even without her mic on, her voice carried throughout the Seaside Convention Center hall.
When she left the stage after hitting the high notes in one of the most difficult arias in the operatic repertoire, there was a pause while the emcee conferred with people off stage. Calls of “Do-over!” “Do-over!” came from the audience. A stagehand walked on and turned on the mic.
Finally, Mather came back out to sing the aria all over again.
Her voice blew the crowd, and the judges away.
Even without acing the talent portion of the pageant, Mather probably would have won the title of Miss Clatsop County. According to Sandy Newman, the director of the pageant, she had already won the Platform Award, the Interview Award and the Fitness award. Mather’s platform is Be a Mentor Your Way, chosen because she enjoys helping others achieve their goals through music.
“Her mic being off was one of the best things that could have happened,” said Newman. “She came back to sing in a more mature, more confident way,” she said.
Mather, 17, the daughter of Gretchen and Mike Mather, was delighted with the win.
“I am so happy and overwhelmed. I am so grateful that they gave me this opportunity to represent the county and I plan to represent it well,” said Mather.
“I definitely want to practice my interview and prepare for the Miss Oregon contest as well as I can. I also want to promote my platform: Be a Mentor Your Way.”
Fellow Astoria senior Julieanna Carr won the title for Miss North Coast. Carr, 18, is the daughter of Deanna Mullins and Jeff Carr. Her talent was Dance, “Country Girl (Shake it for me)” and her platform was child abuse awareness.
Seaside High School sophomore Hannah Garhofer won the Miss Clatsop County Outstanding Teen Award. The 16-year-old is the daughter of Neal and Liza Garhofer and performed a Jazz-Acro Dance, “Viva La Vida.” and promoted her platform, celiac disease and the importance of proper nutrition along with exercise.
Tillamook junior Ashley Allen secured the Miss North Coast Outstanding Teen honor, with her talent dance, “Diamonds,” and her Habitat for Humanity platform, while Annabelle Long of Astoria was selected as Miss Clatsop County Princess.
This story originally appeared in Daily Astorian.