It began in 2003 with the idea to imitate the number one show in the country, “American Idol.” Now on its seventh year, the American Idol competition, NC/DC, has taken off. And this year’s show may be the best yet.
It is hard to believe that two campuses can produce such talent from year to year. Student Activities Director Lori Couch says NC/DC is a great activity for both campuses because “it is an event where we can come together in community and competition. It challenges us to put our biases and campus loyalties aside and vote for the best, even if it is our rival.”
When the competition began, it was originally called “Northwestern Idol,” which consisted of participants only from Northwestern. The following year, Dordt was invited to take part. Both schools are required to abide by the same rules. Some of these rules include: all contestants need to be current NW or Dordt students, participants can compete in only one act, contestants must sing and contestants will be judged based on their singing, choreography and overall performance (An extensive list of the rules can be found at ncdcexteme.com). And just as in “American Idol,” NC/DC has three judges who view and critique each performance.
The biggest difference is that at NC/DC, a live vote determines the winner of $500.
And, over the years, a few changes of occurred such as expanding from having individual performers to allowing groups or individuals. Also, the participants are now allowed to have live bands and/or background singers perform along with them.
This version of “American Idol” has continuous popularity in both campuses no matter to which school the winner belongs.
And, even though Dordt took the winning title the first four years of the competition, two years ago, NW took them by surprise. A favorite memory of Lori Couch and her involvement in NC/DC was NW’s first victory. “It was amazing to see Crystal De Waard, Kayla (Hall) Kauffman and Sophie (Eicher) Ulibarri blow the competition away in 2007 for our first win. They were so good and took over three fourths of the votes.”
Last year’s winner, Morgan De Jong is competing again this year and has fond memories of her involvement.
“I do not like to do things half-heartedly, so when I am involved, I am determined to do my best,” said De Jong. “It’s fun but stressful. Through this epic battle we call NC/DC, I have been given some opportunities to sing for churches and with praise teams. Yet, stresses aside, I’d say NC/DC is a great way to meet new people and use the gifts I’ve been given to give back to my Savior.”
Seven years running, it is said that the talent is deeper than ever before.
“This year I think some very good singers will not even make the top five because of the great amount of talent,” said Couch.
Each year, Student Activities Council has considered taking a different route than the traditional idol competition, but every year, students express their continued interest in the event.
“The competition has developed into what it is today. We have a very talented group this year, and we love to hear positive feedback from the campus.”