An Interview with Gila Valley Idol Winner: Brianna DeRusha

twobrianna3Many people know Brianna DeRusha as the owner of the Creative Flow Studios on Main Street in Safford. However, some might also know that she is the most recent winner of the Gila Valley Idol. “I’ve been singing as long as I can remember and I was given full support by my parents and teachers to become the best performer I could be,” DeRusha stated, “I’ve been entering contests and singing for events all in preparation for a show just like Gila Valley Idol. It was the most exciting moment to win the contest for me because I’d put so many hours into practicing my song and performance for the show. I had both eyes on first place since I placed 3rd in the contest the year before. I knew I needed to step it up against the incredible talent that continues to pour into the Gila Valley Idol competition each year.”

Her grand finale song, George Gershwin’s “Summertime,” was a big hit. She was able to jazz it up and take it low with classic style and grace. “I chose to sing “Summertime”, particularly this version, because it has it all! Soft and powerful, full of range and style, and the version is not one known by too many people so I could make it my own. I give huge credit to the arrangement which was originally performed by Renee Olstead,” DeRusha said, divulging why she chose this particular song, “I love this song because it reaches out to the audience and allows for a feeling of contentment and happiness even in times of doubt.”  Originally composed by George Gershwin in 1934 for the opera Porgy and Bess, “Summertime” quickly became a hit because of its jazzy rhythm and slow-moving harmonic progression.

Now that DeRusha has won, she has set her sights on new heights. “Now that I’ve reached my three year goal of winning Gila Valley Idol, I intend to make the most of it! I plan to record an album with my favorite covers along with some original songs on it.  I also will use my talent of singing and combine it with my love for teaching and continue to offer vocal coaching to the Gila Valley.” Having recently opened her studio on Main Street, she offers a variety of services, including voice lessons. “I offer all of my services, including voice lessons, massage therapy and yoga regularly,” DeRusha stated.

DeRusha’s next performance will be on September twenty-seventh when her family will be opening for Suzy Boggus at the Payson Roundup. “My entire family has always loved creating music and we are at the beginning of a beautiful road of offering more music events to the Valley, and wherever else that road may lead. I am so grateful for the communal support of the Gila Valley and feel that the balance between the love for music and sharing of music has finally begun to take root. The future is bright and shiny from my perspective!”

Congratulations to Brianna DeRusha. All of us wish you luck in your future pursuits. You’ve already demonstrated your determination, talent, and know-how. We look forward to seeing your plans come to fruition.


Brianna DeRusha’s Creative Flow Studio: 518 W Main St. Safford AZ

Brianna DeRusha: 928-651-1648.