On June 25, twenty Kyrgyzstani youth performed in the 2023 American Song Contest final gala concert at Adinay Park in Bishkek, showcasing their musical skill and mastery of the English language. The concert featured performances of American songs in English by talented youth selected during competitive selection rounds held earlier this year, as well as opening remarks from U.S. Ambassador Lesslie Viguerie and guest performances by Bayastan and students in the U.S. Embassy’s Access English Microscholarship Program.
For more than ten years, Public Foundation “Fund Sun People” has organized the American Song Contest with funding from the U.S. Embassy in the Kyrgyz Republic. Throughout the program, secondary school students sing American songs in English, competing to advance through preliminary selection rounds before the final gala concert. The program encourages Kyrgyzstani youth to showcase their talents, learn English, and discover the diversity of American music. It also promotes creative English language instruction methods, as participants build new vocabulary and practice pronunciation with the support of their teachers.
This year, more than 700 video submissions were received during an open call for applications for four participating regions: Batken, Issyk-Kul, Naryn, and Talas. Qualifying and semi-final rounds judged by panel juries identified five finalists from each region to compete in the final gala concert. The final concert’s jury included Omar Zhanyshev and representatives from the U.S. Embassy in the Kyrgyz Republic and the Ministry of Education. From a competitive field, the jury selected the following winners of the 2023 American Song Contest program:
First place: Ayana Toktobekova from Naryn region for performance of Billie Eilish’s “I Don’t Want to Be You Anymore”
Second place: Koisun Ozgorysheva from Talas region for performance of a medley of songs
Third place: Aizhan Shaidinova from Issyk-Kyl region for performance of Mariah Carey’s “Without You”
Eliza Alimova from Batken region also received a special prize from jury member Omar Zhanyshev for her performance of “Until I Found You” by Stephen Sanchez.
For more detailed information, please visit the program’s social media pages or contact project coordinator Alana Soltoeva (+996 555 31 32 31).