Every few years, there is a beauty pageant contestant people can’t stop talking about. Alyse Eady – Miss Arkansas – is the latest one. The beautiful and talented ventriloquist amazed viewers with her incredible performance during the talent portion of the recent Miss America Pageant. Ms. Eady tells CYInterview that ventriloquism is a passion she’s had since childhood.
“This has been such a surprise. I never thought that my talent would be accepted the way that it has been embraced. I mean, what a ride. I’m having the time of my life. I really am…I always tell people that I must have been a really strange child to like ventriloquism and to want to be a ventriloquist. I saw a girl do it when I was nine years old and just thought it was really interesting. So I went to the library and checked out books and watched any kind of video that I could on ventriloquism and taught myself how to do it. So I’ve been doing it for several years now. I love sharing the talent with new people, especially kids and trying to get them really interested in it.”
Could this beauty queen go from being a part time ventriloquist to doing it as her main gig? It’s something that might happen for Alyse. She breaks the news to us that America’s Got Talent is interested in doing something with her, someone from Las Vegas has reached out to her about doing an act and Piers Morgan of CNN’s new show Piers Morgan Tonight had expressed interest when she met him on The David Letterman Show. She’ll also be on The Rachel Maddow Show this coming Friday, on MSNBC.
“I considered it, but it’s not something that I thought could actually be a reality for me. I love doing ventriloquism. I love performing, but I’d always thought of it as something that I could do on the side…Lately, it’s been so interesting just to hear about new opportunities and to actually consider possibly doing that full time…America’s Got Talent has actually contacted me and so will see what happens with that…We’ve had someone reach out to us from Las Vegas and so we’re kind of having something new in the works and I’m just waiting to see what’s gonna unfold with that.
I mean, never thought that something like this would happen to me, girl from small town Arkansas, but you just never know what opportunities are gonna come your way…I’m not sure exactly what they have in mind [America’s Got Talent], but I thought it was great that they had contacted us. Also when I was on The David Letterman Show, I met with Piers [Morgan] and then he mentioned it, and I said, well, they’ve contacted me. But it was just neat to actually get to meet him and then he expressed interest too. So I’m telling you, it has been so, so incredible and while it’s great to be back home right now, I’m really looking forward to going back to New York City on Friday for The Rachel Maddow Show.”
When someone captures the attention of the public the way Ms. Eady has, a question that comes to mind is who would they most want to meet, capitalizing on their seemingly instant celebrity. Alyse says she would love to meet President Barrack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama.
“I would absolutely love to meet our President. I think I’ve got something going for me because I watched the telecast of the Miss America pageant and they showed a clip of me mentioning Michelle Obama and how I thought she was just the epitome of a classy woman. So that’s on TV. Then my onstage question and answer was about healthcare. I mentioned that I thought we were off to a great start with it and it could only be improved. I thought he was doing a great job. So, I mean, I’m a pretty big fan and I would love, love the opportunity to meet with the Obamas.”
Finishing second in this year’s Miss America Pageant was a total surprise for Miss Arkansas. Alyse was shocked she even landed among the top 15 finalists. Had she not made that top tier of contestants, the viewers would’ve never seen her amazing ventriloquism performance – with her endearing puppets, Rocky and Rosie – in the talent portion of the contest and she probably wouldn’t be here with us right now.
“I was shocked to be in the top 15. That’s because I felt like my preliminary competition night left a little bit to be desired. I was sick for a lot of the week. I feel like I was trying too hard maybe…So going into final night, I just thought well, if I have the opportunity to re-compete and do this over again, I’m gonna do it the right way…Making it to the final two, I mean, what a moment…I think if I would thought about the magnitude of what was going on, I would’ve totally fumbled and just been a wreck.”
We took the opportunity to ask Miss Arkansas something we should know about her home state.
“Arkansas has so much to offer. It’s not just how were depicted in the media or in movies. It’s actually quite different than that. I didn’t grow up on a farm. We do wear shoes. I’m from Wal-Mart country, Tyson Chicken country, a lot of industry here. I think it’s really important to mention that the people of Arkansas stand behind other Arkansans. It’s the same with Kris Allen winning American Idol.”
Speaking of Arkansas’s most famous native son, Alyse tells us she thinks former President Bill Clinton is a very compelling speaker. Miss Arkansas also tells us she’s hoping that his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, will undertake another presidential run in the future.
“I do know that he’s really good friends with the president of my university. I graduated in May and he came to speak to us at our chapel one week. He is such a compelling speaker. He’s charming. He’s eloquent. He was so impressive. So that’s something that I like about him is that he’s an incredible speaker…I think that Hillary Clinton should try again. I think she’s got a lot to offer. She’s a brilliant woman. I know several people who have either read or are currently reading her book and they just talk about how impressed they are with her. I think she’s got a great shot and I hope that she does run again.”
Alyse hopes people realize pageant contestants are smarter than they’re thought of and that many are competing for scholarships to further their educations. If there is one thing that comes out of her overnight celebrity, Miss Arkansas hopes it’s that realization.
“I hope that people take away that there’s a lot more to pageant girls and pageant girls are a lot more smart than people give them credit for. I’ve had so many people come up and tell me, I’ve never watched the Miss America Pageant, but I just happened to be flipping through and saw your talent and I was mesmerized and finished watching the pageant. I love to hear that. I think that’s great…I’ve got $48,000 in scholarships to go back to school and so that’s a big deal. I don’t think a lot of people know about the scholarship aspect of it.”
We, at CYInterview, wish Alyse Eady the very best as she continues her reign as Miss Arkansas. Who knows, perhaps she’ll have a show in Las Vegas in the not too distant future.
Listen to the entire CYInterview with Miss Arkansas, Alyse Eady:
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You can see Ms. Eady’s performance at Miss America here if you missed it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KusWJSnmjLE