Reality Rally held its first Lip Sync Finals at Pala Mesa Resort on April 7 and the event was so popular and successful that organizers are considering making it an annual kick-off event.
Fifteen groups participated in this inaugural event to rave reviews by the audience as well as the participants. Master of Ceremonies was Rat Sult, event coordinator and sports marketing and management promoter.
Judges for the event represented a diverse background. Robert Rankin Walker is from Hey Day Records and Events. Pamella Bowen, a former English teacher, is the founder of Beads for Peace, recycling beads into artistic jewelry pieces.
Kevin Des Chenes came from Boston and was a chef on Food Networks “Chef Wanted.” He was the winner of last year’s Reality Rally Chef Open. Nancy Morris is from Temecula Creek Inn. Robin Smith works for the San Diego MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station) and has sent over 65,000 to boot camps.
Matthew Gallagher set the stage and the bar with his rendition of Big and Rich’s “Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy.” Carolyn Rivera from Survivor World’s Apart performed to Drake’s “Hotline Bling.”
Paul Wilkinson dressed up as Zac Brown and recruited Century 21 Preferred Band members Doris Johnson and Felipe Berni to perform “Chicken Fried.” Sheila Kennedy and Frank Billotti from Big Brother season nine performed the Stevie Nicks/Tom Petty version of “Stop Dragging My Heart.”
Tanya Pfenninghausen, a local zumba instructor, with friends Stephanie Sullivan, Cecilia Gonzo, Rose Eberhard and Ida Watson, did their best Spice Girls rendition of “Wannabe.” Sascha LaRusso from Estate d’Iacobelli Winery and an unknown graceful dancer mesmerized with their version of “Chandelier” by Sia.
Laura Thompson-Nelson from Naked & Afraid teamed up with dancer Amanda Kaye from Tethered to perform “The Kill” by 30 Seconds to Mars. Linda Maiete, a local body builder on the Reality Rally production team, performed to “Perfect” by Pink.
Dennis Luciani from Average Joe 2003 got the crowd on their feet and dancing to “Conga” by Miami Sound Machine. Brandon Federowitz, a 22-year old diagnosed with autism travelled from Buffalo, New York and performed “We’re all in This Together” from High School musical.
Entertainment during the intermission was provided by “The Baby Isaac Crew” from Uplift Entertainment, “the World’s Hottest & Hippest Live Action Mascot Group” inspiring children and adults.
Chef Ashley Sherman from Hell’s Kitchen 13 performed Taylor Swift’s “Shake it Off.”
Charity Prestifilippo from Charity for Charity, Stars of the Valley, and Gourmet Italia, brought her all-girl band and rocked the house with their accurate rendition of “We Got the Beat” by the Go Go’s.
Chef Steve Cazel from Cut Throat Kitchen showed off his dance moves to Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk.” Ginger Seal Monge, a local mom on the Reality Rally production team lip synced to “Alone” by Hollyn feat. TRU.
Jamie Goebel, Kim Goodnough and the team from Michelle’s Place closed out the competition with Beyonce’s “All the Single Ladies.”
The voting was close -– one point — and the audience chose Matt Gallagher over Ashley Sherman for second place. Dennis Luciani’s “Conga” won the Golden Mic Trophy for best performance.
“The talent was so good and the response so great that we may do this every year as a kick-off for the Reality Rally,” said event chairperson Jonnie Fox. Fox is founder and Director of Jonnie Fox Entertainment, and vocal entertainment group Jonnie Fox and the Satinettes. Reality Rally is an annual fundraiser benefiting Michelle’s Place, a local cancer resource center for women.