Sophomore wins NC/DC Extreme

Twelve years after singing her first public solo in a second grade school Christmas program, Nicole Northquest has claimed the title of 2010 NC/DC Extreme winner and a $500 prize. The "American Idol"-type vocal competition featured Northquest and four other NWC semifinalists along with five Dordt College students.

At the finals on Nov. 20, Northquest sang If You Want Me To by Ginny Owens and Mercy by Duffy. The soprano performed the Gershwin tune Summertime at the semifinals on Nov. 6 and Renee Olstead's A Love That Will Last at the Northwestern selection show on Oct. 29. She and Alex Herrington were named Northwestern's finalists and each sang two selections at the finals along with Jon Bakker and Michelle Kistler from Dordt. Northquest was chosen the winner by student vote.

"I have always loved to sing and perform and decided that I would like to share my passion for music with my college community by doing NC/DC," says Northquest. "It looked like it would be a lot of fun after I went to two of the shows last year."

The sophomore English teaching major from Litchfield, Minn., sang in her high school and church choirs and school pop concerts. She describes her vocal style as a mix of jazz and folk and says she enjoys a variety of musical genres. Some of her favorite artists include Frank Sinatra, Owl City, Relient K, Switchfoot, Queen, Sara Bareilles, Goo Goo Dolls, John Mayer and Bob Dylan.

Northquest says participating in NC/DC Extreme was a blast. "I loved meeting people who had a shared interest in singing. Being up on stage during the semifinals and finals was incredible. I have never gotten so much feedback from the audience while I was performing, so to hear people snapping, clapping and hollering gave me a really fun energy. Hearing my name [called as the winner] was just the icing on the cake to the whole NC/DC experience."

Watch the NC/DC finals

Watch semifinal round videos

Watch NWC selection round videos