Anna Bella Foster from Mountain Brook is the new Miss Jefferson County Outstanding Teen.
In addition to winning the overall title on July 18, Foster won the talent competition with her interpretation of the famous Puccini aria “O Mio Babbino Caro”.
An aspiring junior at Mountain Brook High School, Foster will also be enrolled in the Miss Alabama Outstanding Teen Scholarship Program in March 2022.
Foster didn’t expect to win the competition.
“I was shocked,” said Foster. “In fact, I was just standing there when they called my name. One of the girls tapped my arm and told me I had won. My answer was, “Are you sure?” I looked into the audience and my parents clapped, but they also laughed at my reaction. “
It may come as no surprise, however, that Foster did so well, especially on the talent side.
“Musical theater is a big part of my life,” she says.
Foster has been training dance since she was two, singing since she was six and acting since she was nine.
She has worked on-site at the Virginia Samford Theater and Red Mountain Theater and has worked as a speaker in Los Angeles.
“I’m so happy that we have such a great art community in Birmingham,” said Foster.
Some of her favorite roles were Anna on Frozen, Baby June on Gypsy and Mary Lennox on The Secret Garden.
She was involved in several school productions and played Mary Poppins in “Mary Poppins Jr.” at Mountain Brook Junior High School and Olivia on Twelfth Night at MBHS.
However, due to the pandemic, she missed a cherished role in an MBHS production in 2020.
“I was cast as Mona in ‘Chicago’ but (COVID-19) became a hit on the day of the premiere, which was so sad because we never got to put that show on,” she said.
Foster had spent a month earlier that summer studying singing, dancing, and acting at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
This almost made her drop out of the Outstanding Teen competition.
She returned to Birmingham from Boston on July 13th and the competition took place just five days later.
“I almost freaked out, but I’m so glad I didn’t,” said Foster.
The soprano aria “O Mio Babbino Caro” – “Oh my dear papa” in English – was a good choice for Foster.
“I have a classic education and wanted to challenge myself,” she says. “This piece is so beautiful, but you really have to use your acting skills to get it read to an audience. So I had a feeling that if I worked hard enough it would be entertaining for those who don’t know classical music. “
While working as an Outstanding Teen, Foster hopes to use her platform to help the community.
She is a member of the Student Leadership Council at Ronald McDonald House and works with the organization on a project called “Art In A Box”.
“My goal is to put boxes of various do-it-yourself art projects together so that residents can enjoy their free time,” said Foster.
Foster is excited to enter the Miss Alabama Outstanding Teen contest.
“I can’t wait to meet the other girls and hear what all these amazing young women are doing in our state,” she said. “I can hardly wait until we can all show our talent on stage.”
She also wants to continue the program.
“The Miss Alabama and Miss America scholarship programs are an amazing way for young women to earn scholarship funds,” she said. “It’s also inspiring to see young women from across the country contribute to their community through the platform of their choice.”