Wednesday September 24; Kingston, Jamaica: "The ability to learn faster than your competitors may be the only sustainable competitive advantage." These are the words from Arie de Geus, Author of the Living Company: Habits for Survival in a Turbulent Business Environment. Geus offers a very insightful look at what the Digicel Rising Stars' finalists have been doing over the past few weeks.
A major part of the contestants stay in the competition is the number of votes they receive, these votes are then used as the determining factors which decide who stays and who goes home on what is now been termed 'Judgement Friday' by the contestants. The contestants have been charged with the task of promoting themselves in numerous ways and ensuring that the votes keep rolling in, to guarantee their place in the talent competition.
In light of this, the contestants have been seen reaching out to the public through Karaoke performances and at shows such as the Denbigh Agricultural Show; but what of their promotions in their communities? How do they do it?
Follow us as we journey with the remaining finalist to their towns, some raising money for phone cards, as the gauge on the thermometer shows a climb in temperature gradient as the competition intensifies with the final three: Cupid group Kahlil, the royalty from Denham Town Princess Cameal Davis and 'Chipmunks' trio SLR.
In the week following the announcement of the 'fantastic four', the top three contestants of Cameal, Kahlil, SLR and fourth place winner K'Alee, teamed up as artistes and created a show in each contestants' home town with patrons paying with Digicel Flex cards to enter.
Cameal explains the decision behind that: "Most of Jamaica would not know this, but we are a happy bunch of friends and there is no better way to show it. When we are all together performing on stage it is like any stage show. You just have to see it for yourself".
"It was fun performing in our community." Comments Roshauna of SLR. "We were well received and the members of the community responded well to the other contestants."
One of the problems contestants face when hosting a community party is competing with other regular weekly events. That was the problem Kahlil faced in Montego Bay last Wednesday (September 17). Wayne explains: "The day after performing in SLR's community in Hanover, we headed over to Mobay, our place, where we were having our thing down at Brewery. The turnout was good but we would have loved to have a bit more support." Wayne went on to explain, "Our event was a relatively new thing, as compared to more establish events like Walk Out Wednesdays and others that were going on at the same time."
Not satisfied, Kahlil is planning to knock the Mobay crowd with not one but two events this week. Wayne explains: "This week we are planning on stepping up things some more with the Mobay family, so we looking at something at Brewery again and to launch something over in Flankers too."
And the Top-Three are reaching even further into their communities by going back to their past high schools to 'season-up the flavour'.
"It's good for me to go back to my old school...I don't know, it just makes me feel at home," explains an overwhelmed Cameal. Cameal was speaking to her old school Kingston Technical High where she performed on Tuesday September 23. Cameal recounts the joy of returning to her old school where she was Head Girl: "Everything just felt at home."
While not yet out of school, the singing harmony of SLR will stay at school on Wednesday September 24 at Rusea's High in Hanover. "Unlike the other contestants, we are still in school, so for the students there it's just the excitement of having all of us as Digicel Rising Stars coming to perform, which has everyone very excited," Latoya explained.
The five boys of Kahlil are also anticipating performing on Thursday (September 25) at Montego Bay High along with the fellow Top-Three contestants. A confident Wayne said: "Mobay High can't wait for we and we can't wait to go there either; so it is going to be a mad affair."
The Digicel Rising Stars' Top-Three seem to be adhering to the famous words of P.T. Barnum, founder of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus: "Without promotion something terrible happens...Nothing!"