By: Nick Blaszczak, Student Journalist
BANGOR – Lexi Crawford owned the stage in the fifth Lip Sync Battle presented by the Student Activities department on the campus of Husson University. With the win, Crawford solidified her spot as the final qualifier for the ‘Clash of the Champions’ Invitational Lip Sync Battle in April.
Roughly 40 students turned out in the Furman Center to see seven contestants square off for a playoff berth. The showdown featured three rounds; rounds one and two were non-elimination with the finals being a three-person battle.
Coordinator of Student Activities Sterling Pingree hosted the event and introduced the contest by revealing the ‘special microphone.’
“I’ve constructed a microphone for tonight out of steel, brawn, part of a broken billiard stick, and a wiffle ball,” said Pingree.
The ‘special microphone’ has become a core part of the event since the second installation. In the Lip Sync Battle’s premiere, competitors got too carried away with their acts and repeatedly slammed an actual microphone on the ground. The microphone suffered noticeable damage in the form of dents, imposing the need for change.
To prevent future damage to microphones, Pingree opted to replace the authentic microphone with an odd one. Thus began the inception of the ‘special microphone.’ Previous instruments have included a banana and a candy cane (for the holiday version, ‘Jingle Bell Battle’).
After being handed the proverbial baton, contestants lit up the stage to put on a spectacle for all in attendance. From the Pokémon theme song, to “Baby One More Time”, and everything in between, competitors were pulling out all the stops. Notably, Chris Fritz who selected “Party Hard” and did just that by running into the audience shouting, leaping, and making hand gestures to pump up the crowd.
However, as outrageous and energetic Frtiz’s performance was, none were more outlandish than that of newcomer Lexi Crawford.
Crawford set the tone of her performances with “I’m on a Boat” by The Lonely Island. Dressed in a Hawaiian shirt, sunglasses, and a bucket hat, Crawford moved with crudeness and authority. To win over the judges, Crawford pelvic thrusted to the beat of the song inducing humor that separated her from the pack. Crawford’s second selection, “I Just Had Sex”, reinforced her style and helped her earn a spot in the final round.
After two rounds of performances, an intermission was called for jury deliberation. During the intermission, contestants gathered on stage for a group performance of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song.
The judges, comprised of previous Lip Sync Battle champions, failed to narrow the field down to two finalists. Joining Crawford in the finale would be Magic and the only duet composed of Zack Hoogkamp and Charlie Fabri.
Magic and the dynamic duo attempted to defeat Crawford with songs “Wannabe” and “My Time Is Now”, but they would be no match for the rookie.
Sporting a U.S. Air Force sweat suit, Crawford brought the house down with “Motherlover” by The Lonely Island. The performance received a thunderous applause and several howls from the audience.
From the moment the judges convened it was clear who the winner was. However, determining the second place victor took considerable time.
Following an extensive delay, the judges reached a decision and stood on stage to announce the winners. Crawford came in first, taking home the coveted $50-dollar Amazon gift card. Second place went to Magic who received a $25 Amazon gift card.
Sterling expressed his opinion on Crawford’s debut by saying: “I think you’ve exceeded everyone’s expectations.”
To which Crawford replied:
“I exceeded my own.”