By Terrence McCoy
By Scott Fishman
By Deirdra Funcheon
By Allie Conti
By New Times Staff
By Ryan Pfeffer
By Deirdra Funcheon
By Kyle Swenson
The Funn Club is set to hit the Broward County Fair around noon on November 23. The four still have more than an hour before performing, and the crowds are sparse. Mark Watson suggests they walk around the fairgrounds while he videotapes them. The girls lock arms and skip down the concourse. They stand out, these four pretty teens all dressed in white and black.
At one of the booths, the attendant chats them up, asking who they are and if they are going to be performing. Then he tries to persuade them to compete for giant stuffed animals. After he slashes the price in half from $4 to $2 and Mark hands the money over, the four girls sit down and grab water guns.
Emmi beats the others and chooses a yellow spotted leopard. As they leave, the man asks Danielle, "So, are you going to be famous some day and have someone videotaping your entire life?"
She tilts her head sideways and stares off as though contemplating the question. "Yeah," she says. "Probably. Something like that."
The Funn Club is inching closer to success. On December 5, Radio Disney's national programming office interviewed the four girls in Dallas and recorded radio promo spots with them. A snippet of the Funn Club version of Tag Team's "Whoomp! There It Is" is currently available to Radio Disney listeners online. Each week, about 5,000 tweens sign on to the website and listen to and rate a selection of about 18 songs.
"Whoomp! There It Is" has been receiving pretty good ratings, says national director of programming Robin Jones. "It's in the same camp as other songs already being played on the radio," she says.
Radio Disney can help the Funn Club secure gigs. The group performed Tuesday when Hilary Duff appeared at Sound Advice Amphitheatre. On New Year's Eve, it will perform at the Jacksonville Zoo.
In the future, Disney also may recommend them for films, animation projects, and commercials. "The girls are very cute and relevant to the target audience we go after," Jones says. "We serve kids who are always looking for someone, quote unquote, 'like me.' These girls look real."