Her ‘Midas’ touch

WE Fest performance a dream for SAHS graduate

080813_midasperformanceLast weekend’s performance at WE Fest for 2009 Stillwater Area High School graduate Alyssa Midas was an experience marking a new chapter of her life.

Midas sang as an opener for Carrie Underwood at this last weekend’s Minnesota country music festival, WE Fest, in Detroit Lakes. Midas’ road to WE Fest was long, beginning in February with Midas participating in six-state karaoke competitions to both win the contest and the opportunity to sing at WE Fest.

Midas was short on words to describe her experience.

“I’ve been singing since I was little. I was in choir at SAHS and I went to WE Fest after I graduated from high school and I saw people onstage that had won the karaoke contest and I wanted to do that,” she said. “So I checked and you had to be 21 to participate. So I had to wait for a few more years and last year I did it and got eighth place, then came back. For the past four years I’ve been working really hard and I worked my butt off and ended up taking first place this year.”

Midas met famous country music artists such as Underwood, Eric Church and Dustin Lynch. She was lost for words when it came to describing her performance opportunity.

“It was pretty awesome. Oh my gosh, it was amazing to get up there. I just felt like this is what I am supposed to do. It was such a rush and it was so cool,” the 22-year-old Midas said. “I got to meet Carrie Underwood and I was on a life high for the whole weekend.”

But there was more to the opportunity for Midas than performing. She’s dreamed of singing as a career most of her life and will move to Nashville in November to allow herself to explore music opportunities presented there.

“After this experience, I know that this is what I want to do with my life and it’s like, ‘All right here we go’,” Midas said. “It’s just a huge passion of mine. I sing any chance I get. There’s no feeling like the feeling you get when you sing onstage. There’s a certain amount of confidence, if you will, a rush of energy, and it’s such an awesome feeling. Singing is what I love to do and I don’t know what I’ll do if this doesn’t work out, but I know I can figure it out later.”

Midas’ singing influences include Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert, Underwood and classic country artists such as Reba McEntire. She also enjoys classic rock bands such as Guns N’ Roses and AC/DC. She’s created a CD with a producer in Minneapolis who she says is willing to help her connect with some people in Nashville when she gets there.

Midas said she was overwhelmed when it came to meeting one of her influences in Underwood.

“It was just mind-boggling. I tried to keep really calm, I didn’t want to be one of those people who was like ‘Oh my gosh I love you!’” Midas said. “I was so happy to learn that she is the person I thought she was. She’s so sweet, down to earth and approachable. I got to give her my CD and I said I don’t know if I can give this to you or if you take things like this but she was all like, ‘Absolutely, Thank you.’ I’m so glad she was so nice about it, even if she won’t listen to it. It was surreal and a very, very cool experience.”

Her Nashville plans could be an even more surreal experience. Midas plans to knock on every door she can, and hand out any CD she can. Her parents reaction to this:

“They are the most supportive people ever. They were the ones who told me to do it now and worry about other things later. They said that this was my dream and they’ve been nothing but supportive. They’ve been to every single choir concert and would do anything for me and will do anything for my dream to happen for me,” Midas said. “My mom was the vocal coach for me at WE Fest and I couldn’t have done it without her. They’re pretty spectacular parents and I’m blessed to have them.”

Contact Avery Cropp at [email protected]