For the first time in five years, the Amherst Youth & Recreation Department held their annual Amherst Teen Idol competition once again, where they highlight the local talent in Western New York.

One contestant, Emma Bray, had her grandparents come out for support. They were the cutest fans!
One contestant, Emma Bray, had her grandparents come out for support. They were the cutest fans!
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The contest originally started in the early 2000s, and its been known to give a platform for rising stars in Western New York, like Liz Osborn, from Osborn & Nash, and Cami Clune, who competed on NBC’s “The Voice.”

Cami Clune, an Amherst native, won the 2015 Amherst Teen Idol competition before competing on season 19 of “The Voice“ and reached the semifinals.

Those who place in the top percentile for Amherst Teen Idol tend to find themselves on the big stage later on in life, whether it be The Voice, WYRK Toyota Taste of Country, Broadway…you name it. 

This year, there were 9 talented singers that competed in the finalist round for Amherst Teen Idol, but only one person walked away with the title.

The 2022 winner for Amherst Teen Idol is…Macy Gabel! 

Photo Credit: Canva Image
Photo Credit: Kadie Daye
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Gabel is only 14 years old, yet she showed off her range in the song she selected, which was “Say The Word” by the Mad Ones, and you can hear part of her performance below. 

After the performance, Gabel said, “I was definitely a little nervous, but I worked hard on that song…I felt good about it.”

Gabel may have won Amherst Teen Idol, but she has big aspirations in the years ahead.

“I’ve been wanting to sing since forever,” she said. “I don’t really know what else I would do with my life. I want to be a singer when I grow up, and that’s my goal.”

Eventually, Gabel plans to audition for The Voice, like 2015 Idol winner, Cami Clune. 

“After that, I want to move to New York City, go to college there and audition for Broadway shows,” Gabel said.

With her first place trophy, Gabel was also awarded a $200 Amazon gift card. 

Sophia Bastian, runner-up for this year's Amherst Teen Idol, performed Skyfall by Adele.
Sophia Bastian, runner-up for this year's Amherst Teen Idol, performed Skyfall by Adele.
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The runner-up for this year’s competition was Sophia Bastian with her performance of Adele’s “Skyfall.” She received a second place trophy and a $150 gift card for Amazon.

Nine finalists pose with the certificates after competing for the title of Amherst Teen Idol.
Nine finalists pose with the certificates after competing for the title of Amherst Teen Idol.
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Amherst Teen Idol hopes to return next year! If you know someone who may be interested, please refer them to the contest information here

EXTRA: Exclusive WYRK Interview With NBC The Voice Winners Girl Named Tom 

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