SANTA MONICA, Calif., Dec 14, 2006 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO) today announced that Rex Hermogino has been voted the winner of the first-ever Yahoo! Talent Show, the online video contest dedicated to discovering the hottest original talent on the Internet. Hermogino, who is from San Diego, caught the eye of judges Tom Green, Maria Sansone and The Ninja from Ask a Ninja.com, as well as the votes of online viewers, with his singing, songwriting and video making talents. In being named the Talent Show winner, Hermogino becomes the newest Web Celeb and wins a development deal to either star in or produce his own show on Yahoo! as well as $50,000 in cash. Starting today, his pilot program can be viewed at http://talentshow.yahoo.com
"All five of our finalists were very talented individuals," said TV personality and talk show host Tom Green. "But Rex just had a particular presence and ability to capture the audience that could easily translate into an ongoing show on Yahoo!. The viewing and voting public really helped us narrow the field, so hats off to them. Nice job, people."
Hermogino, who is a graphic designer, single-handedly put together a series of online music videos, the most popular of which was "Love on the Internet," which spread virally and was viewed over 100,000 times. He stayed with the love-seeking theme during the finalist challenges, interviewing New Yorkers about their favorite pick-up lines. Hermogino was born in the Philippines and raised in Guam, and has been writing music since he was in middle school.
The other four finalists in the Yahoo! Talent Show were Stanley Sowa, Jr. of Chicago, Ben Grinnell of West Hollywood, Calif., Justine Ezarik of Pittsburgh, Pa., and Renzhe Parkour of Orlando, Fla.
The daily Yahoo! Talent Show program was visited by more than four million people, according to Yahoo!. Users submitted more than 5,000 videos and provided over 200,000 ratings to the Yahoo! Talent Show, which started in late October. Viewers watched and voted as the field was narrowed to five finalists who participated in three online video challenges.
"Both the quality and quantity of video submissions we saw was fantastic," said Drew Buckley, general manager, Yahoo! Studios. "As people were able to demonstrate their talents through the Talent Show, Yahoo! has continued to demonstrate its commitment toward offering the most original, high-quality video content for our users."
Yahoo!'s Talent Show was created in collaboration with Embassy Row, which also produces Yahoo!'s hit vlog, "The 9," hosted by Yahoo! Talent Show judge Maria Sansone.
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