Being on stage is something Andrew Smith has no problem with. The OTHS senior is hoping for a future in politics. Last month, he won a hotly contested campaign when he was crowned “Mr. Irresistible” at O’Fallon Township High School.
Smith charmed the judges to earn the crown at the 12th annual male talent show, sponsored by the OTHS Student Council.
“It was awesome,” Smith said about the show on Jan. 20.
For the opening number in the competition, contestants were paired up with an OTHS Golden Girl.
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The second portion of the show — the beach wear and formal wear categories — allowed him to be “goofy,” Smith said.
“I dressed up as a lifeguard and then rented a powder puff blue tuxedo from the 1980s, which was fun,” he said.
Allowing him to showcase his knack for impersonations, Smith said he didn’t hold back during the talent portion of the show.
“That’s the big one. It’s the one that everyone laughs at the most, because all the guys kind of have their own show, which I did celebrity impressions,” Smith said.
Impressions included U.S. presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Donald Trump and actors Owen Wilson, Matthew McConaughey and Patrick Warburton.
Smith also played some rifts from “Piano Man” on his harmonica.
“I have a weird sense of humor,” Smith said with a chuckle.
Initially, 18 boys were in the competition. That was narrowed down to 10 after interviews were completed. But only five advanced to final next round.
“The final round is impromptu. You get a question that you’re not prepared for, so we draw it out of a hat,” Smith said.
His question was: “If you could be the guest on any talk show, what would it be and why?”
“My answer was, ‘Saturday Night Live,’ because I’ve always wanted to say, ‘Live from New York, it’s Saturday night,’” Smith said.
Part of Smith’s motivation for signing up to be a contender in the show was the sponsorship awarded to the person crowned. Smith was awarded a $500 sponsorship for his sponsoring organization, which was the OTHS boys lacrosse team, where he serves as varsity captain. He also earned a $500 scholarship for college for himself.
“The lacrosse team could definitely use it, and they’ve just been so good to me since I got here,” said Smith, who moved to O’Fallon last year from Dayton, Ohio.
All seniors, Nick Boone, first runner up, was named “Mr. Macho.” Charlie Moore was second runner up, and Turner Faulkner was named “Mr. Charming.”
“Mr. Macho” and “Mr. Charming” are voted on by student council members and other contestants.
Boone earned $250 for his sponsoring organization, as well as the same amount as a scholarship for college. Moore earned $125 for his sponsoring organization, as well as the same amount as a scholarship for college. Faulkner earned a prize basket the night of the show.
“I had a lot of fun with the other guys in the show. We were able to get to really know each other better,” Smith said.
Brandi Hitzemann, OTHS teacher and student council adviser, said this is her eighth year helping with the show.
“It is entertaining. The guys always do a great job putting on a twist on the entertainment,” Hitzemann said.
Words of advice for others who may want to participate in next year’s competition, Smith said, “Just go for it.”
“Once you get up on the stage and people are cheering for you, it just kind of brings you right out of the shell. It doesn’t push you back it. It just revs you up,” said Smith, the son of Ray and Stephanie Smith, who also has a sister, Sarah, a junior at OTHS.
Smith is a National Honors Society officer. He also participates in Model U.N., French Club and is on the OTHS Athletic Leadership Council.
In the summer, he is a lifeguard at O’Fallon Memorial Pool.
He said his role models are his parents, who’ve been together for 28 years strong.
“The places they’ve been and the stuff they’ve been through, I respect them so much,” Smith said.
After graduation, Smith said he’s already made plans to continue playing lacrosse in college.
“I will be attending Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn., and will be on their lacrosse team,” Smith said.
In five years, Smith hopes to see himself working in the political arena.
“I hope to be working in a senator’s office or something along those lines. Politics is the route I want to go,” Smith said.
Teachers from Shiloh and O’Fallon feeder schools were judges in the pageant. Funds from ticket sales contribute to funding the scholarships.