Next Top Raptor 2024 We take an in depth look at the most recent edition of Eaglecrest's Next Top Raptor.

Wish Week is full of fun, entertaining activities that embody the true spirit of Eaglecrest, what it means to be a Raptor. This Valentine’s Day, Eaglecrest invited ten talented upperclassmen to compete for the title of Next Top Raptor. Each year, these selected students must broadcast their skills in a group dance, karaoke, a talent show, and a formal questionnaire, but in the end, only one can claim the crown.


To kick off the night, contestants partook in a group dance, choreographed by Alex Bratcher, a participant in last year's competition. This was an opportunity for the audience to meet the chosen students through splits, poses, and school spirit. While not every contestant was a dancer, they all exemplified the school pride, hard work, and charisma of a Raptor!


A party is never complete without teenagers singing their hearts out to their favorite popular songs. Round two of this competition was karaoke, where contestants randomly selected a song from one of three categories, Taylor Swift, pop, and in honor of Cait’s wish to see Hamilton on Broadway: musicals. This karaoke contest was also an opportunity for contestants to showcase their school spirit, decked out in red, black, white, and Raptor gear. This spirit was taken in many ways, from Tabitha McCauley wearing balloons around her waist, to Arely Anaya calling up Cait to assist her in singing Taylor Swift’s We Are Never Getting Back Together.


Eaglecrest is a school where every student is unique, each with special hobbies, passions, and ways to entertain a crowd. Contestants did not disappoint when flaunting their talents.

With a guitar and their own voice, Cyle Crawford (Sr.) captivates the crowd with a classic: Everybody Wants to Rule the World by Tears for Fears. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Proud to show off her extensive theatre background, Isa N'gan'ga (Sr.) performs her rendition of Lana Del Ray's song, West Coast. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Tabitha McCauley (Jr.) choreographs and performs a tap-dancing routine to Under Pressure by Queen. This is the first time Irish dance has been seen on the Next Top Raptor stage, and it did not disappoint. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Emmy Hunt (Sr.) leaves it up to the audience to choose which of two songs that they wrote should be performed, a love song, or a funny song. The audience chose the second option, and was soon cheering for the voice, and guitar-playing of this young musician. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
The multi-faceted Isaac Lutalo (Sr.) performs a cappella, dances, and sings Savage by Megan Thee Stallion, receiving ovation from his army of "Lutallions". (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Abi Tedros (Sr.) touches the heart of many audience members with her angelic voice as she sings A Thousand Years by Christina Perri. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Arely Anaya (Sr.), along with her friends, perform an action-packed dance to Dua Lipa's The Night, as featured in the 2023 film Barbie. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Known to be a singer, Suzan Laport (Sr.) shares her passion for performing with the Next Top Raptor audience. Here she sings I'd Rather Go Blind by Beyonce. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Gabrielle Alfano (Sr.) shares her heart wrenching poem about coping with the loss of her father. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)
Senior, Natalie Maclean (center) goes from bubble-gum Barbie to beloved boyband member with her double act performance, lip-syncing to both Fabulous from High School Musical 2, and It's Gonna Be Me by *NSYNC. (Photo: Avery Stelzriede)  


This round is all about contestants explaining how they exemplify the R.A.P.T.O.R. way. Dressed to impress, contestants walked the red carpet, accompanied by a self-selected escort, and answered questions about their time at Eaglecrest.

Senior, Suzan Laport expresses the multitude of opportunities Raptors have within the school. “ The O in R.A.P.T.O.R. stands for opportunity. I see that every day, because I’ll see the bulletin boards, and I’ll see all of these different events, and different things that you can do [in the school]. When you apply yourself to your teachers, and your friends, you have so many opportunities that way too. Like, I’m going to a basketball game, and I’m going to be speaking in it, which is crazy! It’s so cool we have so many opportunities within the school as long as we reach for it.”

When asked about why he decided to join Next Top Raptor, Isaac Lutalo (Sr.) delivers an inspirational message of his influence on the Eaglecrest community. “My life goal is to show that you can do whatever you want to do by being your unapologetic self. I want to give you all creativity, and I want to give you all inspiration so that when I leave, you all can come on the stage and continue my legacy.”

Gabrielle Alfano (Sr.) reflects on her favorite part of the competition. “It’s really fun to all get together and do this. My favorite part of Next Top Raptor is definitely the community. I really enjoy spending time with the people I know, and getting to know the people I don’t, they’re all so talented.”

“The T in R.A.P.T.O.R. stands for teamwork, and I exemplify teamwork everyday by just trying to bring my best self to the people around me, whether it’s in class and people need help, having to ask people for help, whether it's in theater when all of us are working our butts off. It’s anywhere and everywhere, I am a person for the people: if anyone calls for me, I will do my best to help all of you," says Senior, Cyle Crawford when asked how they exemplify the R.A.P.T.O.R. code of teamwork.

Abi Tedros (Sr.) illustrates her helpful nature, and the desire to always help others. “The two R’s stand for respect and responsibility. I stand for respect by trying to make sure that I am the best person I can be. We never know what anyone is going through, so just show them your best, and treat them how you want to be treated.”


Next Top Raptor 2024 introduced a new part of the competition, one that is hoped to continue for years to come. Masked Raptor, based on the popular reality competition The Masked Singer, features four anonymous teachers performing for the student body between each round of the competition. Two of the four teachers were revealed at the end of the competition, Andrea Rebert, school counselor, in the Olaf costume, and Bell Choir teacher Ian Degala dressed as the ghost. The other two competitors are to be revealed in Friday’s pep assembly.


After a long night of competition, Eaglecrest crowns its 2024 Next Top Raptor, senior, Isaac Lutalo. Below are highlights of his performance, as well as an exclusive interview after his victory.