- Associated Press - Thursday, September 23, 2010

MOSCOW (AP) - The winner of the Karaoke World Championships may not achieve world fame, but at least won’t have to worry where the next meal is coming from _ the top prize is 1 million Russian dumplings.

With a purse like that, it’s clear that karaokists retain a sense of humor about a pursuit as derided as it is popular. But they’re serious enough to have traveled from as far away as Australia and Nigeria for a three-day battle-of-the-no-bands in Moscow.

The first night of competition Thursday showed karaoke at a tipping point. It’s gone far beyond caterwauling in front of a group of sozzled buddies and regretting it the next morning; most of those on stage have serious pipes and carefully worked-out moves.

The winner of the dumplings will be announced Saturday.

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