Singers with ties to central Texas take their talents to the national stage
The town of Killeen is back on the map with two local artists competing in a national song competition, but they are not the first to do so on the world stage.
Rose Short knows exactly what it feels like to be front and center on this national stage. With Jershika Maple and Manny Keith in her place, it’s a good sign that Killeen’s entertainment hub is gaining momentum.
These days, Rose Short is still singing. Short says that since her time in the national spotlight and throughout the pandemic, she has been able to focus on her craft.
Short said: “I got to be honest about my sound, tap into my sound and really develop … who I am as an artist. I recorded a lot!”
Seeing other artists from her hometown on the same stage she was dominating is a different kind of pride.
“To be able to step onto the world stage. You know, first of all, it’s a unique thing in life,” Short said. “To see the performance, it allows the mind to believe that it can really happen.”
Short said seeing local talent on the national stage is important for local singers to see their dreams come true. Especially knowing that Killeen is not Los Angeles, when it comes to entertainment. Fortunately, Short says social media has been a game-changer.
Short said, “It’s just a lot of things that relate to the arts, you know, [things] we don’t really have one here. It just started to gain momentum, the entertainment just started to gain momentum a few years ago. “
Short, Jershika Maple and Manny Keith are all Killeen ISD graduates, Director of Fine Arts Dr. Karen Herrera said the talent of this school district is undeniable.
Herrera said, “It just puts more emphasis on the arts, whenever we have students who excel in that way. There are so many examples I could cite of our kids, you know, doing well in all fields, and academics too like athletics and the fine arts. “
Herrera said she was honored to work for a district that makes the fine arts a priority.
“It’s so great that Killeen ISD is investing so much in our fine arts programs and making sure, even though we don’t have to do it according to state standards, to offer all of the artistic disciplines that we do. let’s practice here. Not just early on at an entry-level, but higher level art classes throughout our programs, “said Dr Herrera.
This investment is paying off, putting KISD and the town of Killeen on the map.
Herrera said: “We are delighted to see how they are doing in the competition, for sure Killeen ISD will be behind them all the way.”
Short wishes Maple and Keith the best of luck for the rest of the competition. She says there will soon be an announcement for an evening of listening with her new music.
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