RANDOLPH, NJ - Randolph High School senior Austin Cross was crowned the prestigious title of “Mr. RHS” at the annual Spring event, which is one of the most highly anticipated events at the school every year.
At “Mr. RHS”, seniors compete to win a the bragging rights of the title, along with the real prize which is a free bids to prom. Contestants perform a chosen talent, and share their personality with the judges and audience by answering questions during the evening.
Cross came out on top by singing a rendition of “Shallow” from the hit movie "A Star is Born" with the help of senior Matt Pasquale’s vocals.
“It was hilarious and made me want to hear it again”, Junior Cassan Berthier, an audience member, when asked about Cross's performance. Both the judges and the packed audience were astounded by the courage of Cross to belt out such a ballad.
While Cross did in fact impress the judges, many of the other contenders also amazed them. Dressed in an extravagant fur coat, Dan Mambelli took second place after stunning the audience with a rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody” while delivering his famous high kicks. In third place, Shane Connuck proved his abilities in country music by performing the popular “Old Town Road”, while sporting a USA Boxing uniform.
“I think Billy Ray Cyrus [singer of “Old Town Road”] just lost his job” commented Hope Ugalde, who was the emcee of the night alongside Ross Brenner.
Other talents of the night included Tyler Locke’s stand up comedy show; he had the entire audience cracking up over his self-deprecating jokes and awkward handshake stories. Chase McBride sang Jason Mraz’s “Lucky” alongside Delaney Clay.
Hunter Murphy delivered a powerful version of “One Minute.”Physical Education teacher Mr. Will Nahan responded to the act by stating, “I don’t know what that was, I don’t know if I will ever get that out of my head, but, man, am I fired up after that.” To finish off the talent portion, Algin Utku auctioned off his original “‘Game of Thrones’ related picture” to Mr. Blair for $100.
Following the talent contest, the question and answer phase began, as two emcees took turns asking each candidate a question.
When asked how he defines success by Ugalde, Cross responded with, “Setting a goal and getting to achieve it. The friends along the way is the true success.”
After the interviews, the scores were being tallied. To pass time, Brenner and Ugalde went up to random audience members to question them, keeping the audience entertained.
After judges Mr. Blair, Mrs. Ferrentino, Mrs. Poff, Mrs. Stierch, Mr. Nahan finally came to their difficult decision, the emcees announced Austin Cross as the winner of “Mr. RHS,” generating a huge applause from the crowd.
This night was memorable not only for each of the contestants, but for the entire senior class.
Ediitor's Note : Miki Kahana is a student at Randolph High School participating in a journalism program.