ALEXANDRIA, Va. Aca,!" Twelve Operation Rising Star semifinalists will take the stage next week to compete for bragging rights as the military's best singing talent. The public is invited to participate in the final rounds of competition Nov. 12-14 at the Wallace Theater on Fort Belvoir, Va., by joining the live audience at the theater or voting online.

All 12 competitors will perform 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST Nov. 12. The celebrity judges will narrow the field to six, who will perform a 90-second song with a live band 12:30-2:20 p.m. EST Nov. 13 during a 60-minute live-to-satellite show.

The winner and runners-up will be selected by a combination of votes from the celebrity judges, live audience and online voters. Log on to to view the performances and vote via the Internet. The voting window will be open from 2:30 p.m. Nov. 13 until 10 a.m. Nov. 14.

A 30-minute live-to-satellite show on the Pentagon Channel will be filmed and aired at 1 p.m. EST Nov. 14, revealing the winners.

This years' celebrity judges include Grammy-nominated Latin Christian recording artist Jaci Velasquez, who will provide her vocal talent insights; Nigel Caaro, top reality television producer from America's Got Talent, will provide contestants with feedback from a producer's perspective; and retired Sergeant Major of the Army Jack Tilley, back for a third year, will infuse this contest with his wit and knowledge.

Doors will open at Wallace Theater 30 minutes before show time each day; seating is free on a first-come, first-served basis.

2008 Operation Rising Star Semi-Finalists

Staff Sgt. Darius Ramos from Brussels, Belgium
Family member Joyce Dodson from Schweinfurt, Germany
Pfc. Star Exum from USAG Camp Red Cloud, South Korea
Family member Indirah Tirso from Tori Station, Japan
Spc. Cyril Powell from Fort Bragg, N.C.
Family member Fatima McElveen from Fort Campbell, Ky.
Family member Amy Downing from Fort Carson, Colo.
Family member Jill Charles from Fort Hood, Texas
Staff Sgt. Victor Trinidad from Fort Lewis, Wash.
Capt. Lisa Kopczynski (Army National Guard) from Joint Base Balad, Iraq
Capt. April McDonald from Camp Stryker, Iraq
Air Force Staff Sgt. Dirik Cole from Soto Cano, Honduras