After months of auditions where competitor numbers were whittled down to only ten, two Peterborough lads took second and third place in the 28th Aurora Magna Hoedown Showdown on Saturday September 17th. Jade Daniel Eagleson of Bailieboro took second prize while Cameron Von Criegren of Peterborough took third place in this competition for rising amateur country music stars.
When Jade picked up the guitar at age 13, it was clear he was a natural. Now 22, he plays the occasional Open Mic gig, which has led to a few local performances. Convinced that a career in music was in his future, Jade’s Grandmother Linda Walker noticed the Magna competition this spring and encouraged Jade to put his name forward. He was reluctant at first, but Walker’s support and persistence eventually brought him around and he took the plunge. As he progressed through the competition, he had technical help from Brad of Millbrook PC who loaded his video submission onto a USB drive.
By the time Jade reached the stage in Aurora, there were only a handful of contestants remaining. Facing intense competition, these young performers wowed the crowd of thousands who had come to catch an early glimpse of Canada’s next hot Country Stars. Featuring raffles, a silent auction, Texas-style food and fun, this annual event sponsored by Canadian global automotive supplier Magna International of Aurora raises funds for charitable organizations including ALS, and local service organizations in Aurora serving youth, such as Big Brothers and Sisters, as well as athletic organizations. This year’s event raised $464,000 for good causes.
Following the competition both Jade and Cameron were invited to perform with Beverley Mahood’s band for the Niagara Wine Festival event at Montebello Park in St. Catharines, topping off an incredible weekend for these young musicians. Mahood is a successful singer, songwriter, actress, model, and television host with CMT with a soft spot for charitable organizations.
The recognition from this recent success has fueled Jade’s confidence and enthusiasm for a musical career. He is expanding his skills to song writing, sticking to the country music genre in his comfort zone. Expect to see more of this talented young performer as he begins his professional music career in local venues in Peterborough and the Kawartha Lakes region. KG