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AMES, IA – Country musician Lauren Alaina will host Iowa State University’s annual singing competition, Cyclone Voice, on Thursday, April 6. The event will feature 14 ISU students vying to become the next Cyclone Voice. Doors will open at 7:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. performance in the Great Hall of the Memorial Union. Admission is free and open to the public.

Lauren Alaina’s music career began with her audition for season 10 of American Idol, where she went on to finals, finishing as the runner up. Following American Idol, Lauren released her single “Like My Mother Does,” which sold 121,000 copies its first week. Her debut album, Wildflower, was released in 2011 and debuted at number five on the US Billboard 200 chart. Her follow-up album, Road Less Traveled, was released in January and features the hit single and title track “Road Less Traveled,” which peaked at number on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.

Lauren was recently nominated for New Female Vocalist of the Year at the ACM Awards taking place Sunday, April 2 and has shared the stage with country superstars including Alan Jackson and Carrie Underwood. She was featured on the Love Unleashed Tour with Martina McBride this past winter and will be joining Luke Bryan for his Huntin’, Fishin’, And Lovin’ Every Day Tour this summer.

Lauren will host the annual singing competition, introducing the show and each of the student performers. She will also perform a short music set during the judge’s deliberations, before the 2017 Cyclone Voice winner is announced.

32 ISU students participated in the March 27 Cyclone Voice preliminary competition and the judges selected 14 finalists to move on to the final competition. Those finalists include:

Prep Iowa
  • Hannah Bird | junior, nutritional science | Emmetsburg, IA
  • Sharla Charlton | junior, psychology | Perry, IA
  • Emmy Rose Cuvelier | junior, performing arts | Fort Collins, IA
  • Tyler Geiger | freshman, agricultural business | Deep River, IA
  • Samantha Kragel | freshman, pre-interior design | Marion, IA
  • Derek Lutt | freshman, pre-business | Singapore
  • Keeley McEniryn | sophomore, mass communication | Waukee, IA
  • Hannah Joy McNeal | freshman, open-option | Burnsville, MN
  • EllieMae Millenkamp | freshman, agricultural business | Jerome, ID
  • Hailey Padgett | senior, graphic design and advertising | Des Moines, IA
  • Nick Pigott | senior, English |Springfield, MO
  • Jess Tharp | sophomore, animal science | Waverly, IA
  • Megan Van Kirk | senior, event management | Cedar Rapids, IA
  • Brooke Whitney| freshman, animal science | Maquoketa, IA

The free event is sponsored by the Iowa State University Student Union Board (SUB), a student-run programming board that organizes cultural, recreational, educational, social, and entertainment activities and events throughout the academic year.

For more information, visit SUB online at or call the ISU Student Activities Center at (515) 294-8081.

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