Michaelah Burns has always wanted to sing. Since she was a little girl, singing was one of the main things that made her happy and gave her an outlet to express herself.

Michaelah Burns has always wanted to sing. Since she was a little girl, singing was one of the main things that made her happy and gave her an outlet to express herself.


Now, a junior at Blue Springs High School, Burns has started to make a name for herself not only in the Eastern Jackson County community, but also throughout the metropolitan area.


“It was a lot of fun,” she said of the KC SuperStar competition. “I was really shocked at how I did because everyone was so amazing.”


After months of competition, Burns was named the winner of the KC SuperStar competition earlier this month. This is the second year for the metro-wide competition, which is produced by the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City. It is designed to be like “American Idol” with the purpose to find the best high school-age singer in Kansas City.


Burns also competed in Sing Blue Springs! in February and took home the top prize in that. She sang “Love Song” by Sara Bareilles and won $1,000 during that competition.


The KC SuperStar competition began with more than 200 students, representing 58 high schools in March.


After initial tryouts in late March, Burns made the semifinal field of 24 singers. She competed in the semifinals on May 9 at the White Theatre and was one of 12 named to compete in the finals on Aug. 28 at Yardley Hall at Johnson County Community College.


That group was then whittled down to three and a live audience voted on the winner. Burns, who sang Kelly Clarkson’s “Beautiful Disaster,” won a $5,000 scholarship and a $1,000 donation to the Blue Springs High School music department.


Anna Stastny, who graduated from Blue Springs High School in the spring, placed third in the competition. She received a $500 scholarship.


“We would have six hourlong practice sessions and work with professional vocal coaches and choreographers,” Burns said. “It was a lot of fun, but a lot of hard work. Singing is my whole life, and it proved to me that this is what I am meant to do.”


Winning KC SuperStar is only one of Burn’s noteworthy accomplishments in the last few months. She also fared well in forensics as her Blue Springs High School duo interpretation partner, Lisa Brockmeyer, and her placed eighth in the nation at the National Speech and Debate Tournament in June. She said it feels good to know that she is not just a singer or not just a performer. She can do both.


“I am strong in a lot of areas, which does make me feel good,” she said. “When I am singing or performing, I can express my feelings, whether that is happy or sad. I try to bring whatever I am feeling into the songs so that I can move people.”


Among her influences are Adele, Beyonce, Natasha Bedingfield, Bareilles and her own mother, Lisa Burns. Michaelah said while she studies the others’ music and techniques, it was her mother that has taught her one of the most important lessons.


“She has taught me how to persevere,” she said. “No matter how I do, even if I fail, I have to keep on going.”


As the KC SuperStar, Burns has the opportunity to perform at a variety of events this year, including a University of Kansas basketball game and the lighting of the Country Club Plaza holiday lights Thanksgiving night – one of her most anticipated performances.


“I will get to see everyone that was in the competition again, and I will be the featured artist,” she said. “It will be such as great chance to sing, and I am really excited.”


Burns plans to continue on with singing even after she graduates from high school in May 2013. Her ultimate dream is to perform on Broadway and to become a solo recording artist.


“This experience reassured me that this is what I am meant to do – sing,” she said. “I was given a gift, and my job is to share it with other people.”