Redefining College Sports, National Guard Is Called To Ferguson, Wisconsin’s Young Musical Talent

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Heard On Central Time

Significant changes to college sports as we know them may be afoot. We hear how possible compensation and benefits could turn the focus of college sports away from amateurism. Then we hear from a reporter in Missouri about the protests happening there and hear music from some of Wisconsin’s top young talent.

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  • Wisconsin's 'Original Glee' Group Showcases Young Musical Talent

    Wisconsin’s own self-proclaimed “original Glee” group is heading into its final week of its summer tour of musical performances around the state.

    The Kids From Wisconsin is a group of 33 talented young performers from around the state, ranging in age from 15 to 20 years old. Twenty of the performers are singer and dancers, while the others are part of a 13-piece band. The group performs songs ranging from American Songbook originals to chart hits like “Happy” by Pharrell Williams.

    Gov. Warren Knowles founded the group in 1969.

    “It was a turbulent time,” said former performer and board member Michael Sander. “We were at war, and Governor Knowles wanted to focus on some of the best things Wisconsin has to offer.”

    The group has become a summer tradition in the state, with near-daily performances in July and August and an 11-day residency at the state fair.

    Throughout the summer, the performers not only hone their talents, but also form a strong community and learn leadership skills.

    Cody Anderson, a 20-year-old baritone from Menomonie, is the oldest member of the group, though it’s not something he’s very conscious of.

    “We forget about everyone’s age because we’re all around each other non-stop, either on a bus, or we all live together in the Tommy Thompson Youth Center at State Fair Park,” said Anderson.

    This summer is Anderson’s last in the ensemble, but he plans to continue pursuing musical theatre the American Musical and Dramatic Arts Academy in Los Angeles.

    Many of the students who graduate from the group continue to pursue music, but others are interested in fields like medicine and marine biology. According to Sandler, the time people spend in Kids From Wisconsin helps develop skills that are valuable even outside of creative pursuits.

    “It isn’t just performing. There are a lot of communication skills that you are going to use in all your life. We’re just really wanting to make well-rounded citizens who give back to the community,” said Michael Sander.

    The group’s final performance of the summer is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 23 at Monona Grove High School. The schedule of their final week can be found here.

  • New NCAA Reforms, And How They Might Redefine College Sports

    New reforms in the NCAA could mean the end of the league’s model of amateurism…and possibly mean money or other benefits to college athletes. An expert on college athletics talks about the changes, and why we shouldn’t dismiss the educational benefits from participating in college sports.

  • The Latest News From Ferguson: National Guard Is Called, Autopsy Reports, And More Protests Turning Violent

    Missouri Governor Jay Nixon ordered the National Guard to come to Ferguson after protests over the death of unarmed black teen Mike Brown turned violent Sunday night and early Monday morning. A reporter from St. Louis Public Radio gives an update on the latest news in Ferguson, including private autopsy results.

  • 'The KIDS From Wisconsin' Wrap Up Summer Of Performances Around The State

    A group of Wisconsin students, The KIDS From Wisconsin, has been traveling the state this summer giving performances from Kenosha to Green Bay. They join Central Time to reflect on the season.

Episode Credits

  • Rob Ferrett Host
  • Veronica Rueckert Host
  • Galen Druke Producer
  • Chris Malina Producer
  • Amanda Magnus Producer
  • Michael Sander Guest
  • Welch Suggs Guest
  • Jason Rosenbaum Guest

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