The Judges

STEPHEN DE LAPP

Steve first appeared on stage at age 8 doing a stand-up routine at his elementary school talent show.  He continued performing in Southern California until age 13 when his voice broke and he was dismissed from the Glee Club (yes they do have Glee Clubs in the states).  After futile efforts to master a musical instrument, he even failed at the recorder, he decided to pursue a music promoter path.  He and a couple of mates staged monthly dances for 600 people giving local surf rock “garage” bands exposure.  He also organised weekly post Friday night football (gridiron) parties with live music for 100 – 200 people.  In addition he took on the management of two bands.  His budding career as a music impresario was cut short by the realities of university, army, family and business career in development and operation of hotels and theme parks.  He has a diverse appreciation of music genres, from the 30’s to today.  Having lived and worked in many parts of the world including Arabia, South America, Asia and of course the US and Australia he has developed an appreciation of regional music.  Today he is involved in planning the entertainment and “show” for the Foundations various events such as the annual ball.

 

Priyanka Rao

Priyanka Rao is a Director at commercial furniture manufacturer Luxmy Furniture. Luxmy works in a collaborative way with an industry leading engineering department that manufactures product for office, healthcare, hospitality, government and education. Prior to this she worked at a major record label, marketing the new releases of Australian and International artists such as The Cat Empire, Angus and Julia Stone, Empire of the Sun, The Gorillaz, Coldplay, Katy Perry, Arcade Fire and many more. 

Priyanka has diversified Luxmy from white-labelled manufacturing to licensed manufacturing and distribution of designer product designed by Australian and Danish designers under brands Woodmark, Lux Studio and Paustian. Priyanka was listed as BRW’s Top 5 Young Entrepreneurs to watch in 2013, has been listed a twice in the Smart Company 30 under 30, and was invited by Treasurer Joe Hockey to be one of the 2 SME representatives at the G20 Finance Minister gathering. 


Rob Hezkiel

Rob Hezkial (Lead singer and band front man for Kid Confucius featured in an eight-piece Australian band from Sydney, Australia. The band  formed in 2001 and have since played well over 400 live shows around the country, including major festivals as well as their own headline shows at venues such as The Annandale Hotel and The Metro Theatre. In 2005 the band released a self-titled album and two singles "Words" and "Skintight." The album, a mish-mash of soul, hip-hop, pop and funk, received great critical acclaim, most notably from Rolling Stone who hailed the album as one of the standout local releases of the year. "Words" also enjoyed some solid months of radio and TV play. The band released its second album Stripes in 2007 with three singles "Closer", "Last Straw" and "Moment". Stripes was the band's attempt at making a Detroit-era Motown soul album and it was quick to earn rave reviews from press around the country as well as a publishing deal with Mushroom. "Moment" has enjoyed good radio play on triple j. Kid Confucius is set to release its third album in October 2008. The first single from this album, "Good Luck", is out now.

Kid C has also gained a stellar live reputation with many sold out appearances at various Sydney venues. The band has been touring nationally since 2004 as well as performing at big festivals such as Splendour in the Grass, Homebake, The Great Escape, Groovin' The Moo, Festival Of The Sun and more.

Taking a break from touring in early 2008, the band set its sights on writing and recording a new album - its third in as many years. The new album marks a dramatic and radical shift in style and sound for the band. With newfound influences such as The Strokes, Phoenix and The Beatles meeting older Motown influences such as Marvin Gaye and Otis Redding, the new Kid Confucius is more of a live garage soul experience.

Rob and the Kid C band enjoyed Charts and Awards such as:

  • Words, Triple J Net 50
  • Words filmclip was on most requested clips list on Channel V for over two months.
  • the album was featured as album of the week on FBi Radio and SBS Alchemy.
  • Skintight film clip won a high commendation in cinematography from the Australian Cinematographers Society in 2005.
  • Words nominated for a 2006 Urban Music Award.
  • Won title Best Urban Act at Australian Dance Music Awards in November 2006
  • Won title Best R&B Band at Australian Urban Music Awards in August 2007

Today – Rob Hezkial is Project Director of Workplace at MPA Construction Group overseeing project delivery teams and working alongside industry professionals delivering premium fit out and refurbishments