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Maria Encarnacion crowned RichCity Idol winner

Maria Encarnacion is now officially the best high school singer in Richmond—at least for the year.

The Grade 11 student from Matthew McNair Secondary School was crowned the champion of RichCity Idol 2014 at Richmond Gateway Theatre Thursday night, beating out nine other contestants from public schools across Richmond.

As she played the grand piano, Encarnacion, whom judge Paige Morgan called “one of the most talented girls in the building,” performed John Legend’s “All Of Me” in front of a near-sellout crowd.

“Maria blew me away,” said  judge Adam Hurstfield, who has performed with stars such as The Backstreet Boys, Rihanna, and 50 Cent.

“I think she’s a superstar.  She was commanding the audience while effortlessly playing the piano. I was utterly impressed.”

While the event was the end of a 6-month long process involving not only the idols but also the executive team, volunteers, and coaches, for Encarnacion and the other singers, this is the beginning of their musical careers.

Said judge Gio Levy: “It all starts with competitions like this.”

Said organizers on the RichCity Idol Facebook page: "What an amazing night! A huge thank you to everyone who came out and supported their school idols and RichCity Idol! This show definitely could not happen without you! We would also like to thank all of our sponsors for helping us make this show possible! A huge congratulations to all of the idols for pulling off such an amazing performance! You all definitely gave it your best and it was a pleasure seeing the idols perform together!"

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