First night of D-Days kicked off with Yotes Got Talent
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First night of D-Days kicked off with Yotes Got Talent

Yotes Got Talent kicked off the first night of DDays week. The event was Sept. 26 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The event had talents including pianist, singers, and a drag performance. 

The event started with Alex Defenbaugh and Piper Roseland introducing themselves as the hosts of Yotes Got Talent. Kim Grieve, vice president for student services and dean of students gave an opening speech explaining the beginning of DDays Mr. and Miss. Dakota. 

“The Student Association organized the first South Dakota Days on Nov. 20, 1914.  Ferm Wassem from the class of 1917, was elected Miss Dakota by a student vote, and the honor of Mr. Dakota was added to the Dakota Days tradition with Karlton Adam, from the class of 1987. Today students still elect royalty,” Grieve said. 

The students who participated were judged by the audience. Leticia Thomas, sang a song while playing the guitar. Thomas said they love to perform and connecting to the audience. Thomas ended up winning third-place at the event. 

“I wasn’t expecting to go far, but I was, and I was just glad that I felt validated. It just felt good and made me want to keep going, with performing. It was also a big relief because in my auditions I totally botched them like I went in and I played a few chords and I forgot the lyrics but I was able to come and conquer,” Thomas said. 

Second place was awarded to Marga Block and Ntombi Ngeleka who performed “I’m yours” by Jason Mraz. First place was awarded to Kyle VanBuskirk who goes by the stage name “Polyester” who chose to perform because he wanted to challenge himself.

“It’s really empowering, I’d say, it was really nerve wracking backstage, like I was drumming it up to be worse than it was. And then it was fun because everyone was just cheering for me and really being supportive,” VanBuskirk said. “I would like to thank my wig glue for always being there for me.” 

There were other performances including Margret Meierhenry singing “Bennie and The Jets” while playing piano, Emma Haven singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and Liam Mechling doing a DJ transmute.