Fort Bend`s Family Feud Family
Fort Bend People
Delrick, Vanessa, Aaron, Marsha,
and Paul Brown, with the help
of 4-year-old Devan, recently
competed on Family Feud
Fort Bend family competes on TV game show Family Feud
Written by Tonya Ellis | Photography by Suzi Issa
Ever since she was a girl, Vanessa Inga Brown wanted to
compete on a TV game show. “I’ve always thought it would
be fun,” she shares. “Whatever game show would be fine with
me.” The Fort Bend resident’s dream came true this past year,
when she, her husband Delrick, her brother-in-law Aaron,
and her parents-in-law Paul and Marsha Brown were selected
to compete on the TV game show Family Feud.
Brown found out about Family Feud auditions while scrolling
through Sugar Land Magazine’s Facebook page. “It sounded
like something fun and something the family would want
to do,” she recalls. In Family Feud, five members from two
families each battle to give the top answers to questions asked
of 100 people surveyed across the country. The winning
family competes in a fast money round with the chance to
win $20,000. Win five games and you get a new car.
Brown and her husband chose his brother and parents to
be their teammates, because they live close by in Brazoria
County. “It was easy to make a selection, because my family
all lives in Austin,” she explains.
Standing out from the Crowd
The Browns estimate that about 500 people showed up to the
auditions. “They had a stage set up just like Family Feud, with
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fake buzzers. They wanted you to show lots of energy and get
a feel for your family,” Vanessa says. The Browns impressed
the judges enough to be asked for a second interview in a
back room. A month later, they received a post card inviting
them to audition in Atlanta.
Their game playing ability helped them stand out from the
crowd, but their height could have also put them above
the competition, Vanessa guesses. “I’m six feet, and my
husband’s tall, and all the family is really tall,” she says. “We
thought maybe we stood out. Plus, I had high heels on.”
Once they had the green light to go to Atlanta, Vanessa’s
mother-in-law Marsha kicked the preparations into high
gear. “She was organizing the practice and putting us
through mock speed rounds, so we would get that quickthinking demeanor,” explains Delrick. “She taped the shows,
and anytime you walked into the house she’d ask you a
question. You’d say,
‘Could you say hi?’
Family Feud host, Steve Harvey, kept
She was definitely the
the Brown family laughing the entire
time while on the show
On the Set
When they arrived in
Atlanta, the Browns
had another audition
on the real show set.
They passed that test,
and were chosen
for the actual show.
“It was just a crazy
experience to see how
they do shows and see
how it’s taped,” says
Delrick. “[Host] Steve
Harvey was hilarious.
He was cracking
jokes, non-stop.” He adds, “It was exciting to be there. If
you saw all the people at the audition - there were people
everywhere. What are the odds to go from that point, to the
point where you’re actually on the show, the lights are going,
and the bells are dinging? That’s quite an accomplishment.”
The Browns were in the studio from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m.
watching about five other pairs of families face off until their
feud started at 7 p.m. Harvey would perform monologues
throughout the process, making it seem like a comedy show.
“It was a long day,” says Vanessa. “They have a DJ that tries
to get the audience involved, clapping, cheering, and making
loud noises. They fed us breakfast, and then [we had] lunch
at 4 p.m.” Vanessa was most surprised by Harvey’s many
outfits. “He changes after each show to make it look like the
next day,” she says.
The pressure was on once the Browns hit the stage for
their game. “It’s an adrenaline rush,” says Delrick. “I played
sports growing up, and I felt the same kind of jitters and
excitement. You’re excited and revving and ready to go. We
were getting pumped up and egging each other on.”
“I was extremely nervous,” adds Vanessa. “My lips were
shaking. What kind of calmed me down is I wouldn’t look
out in the audience.” Vanessa says she was anxious that
Harvey, who is famous for joking with contestants about
their answers, would tease her. “There was a question where
it asked you what sport gives you a size advantage, and the
answers were wrestling, football, basketball, and a jockey,”
she recalls. “When it was
my turn, I couldn’t think
of anything, and I told
him soccer. Steve Harvey
gave me a look like,
Vanessa and Delrick
made sure to include
their 4-year-old son
Devan in the experience,
even though he couldn’t
compete on the show. “I
actually gave a shout out
to him,” says Vanessa.
Devan also taped a home
video encouraging his
family members who
played on the show.
The Brown family recalls a pact they made from the very
beginning. “We made sure we understood that nobody
would get mad at each other,” says Delrick. “Your family is
so much more important than that. We had a great bonding
experience. It’s something we will remember for the rest of
our lives.” Be sure to tune in to Family Feud on The CW39
April 16 to see how the Brown family did! SLM
TONYA ELLIS enjoys freelance writing and loves watching the
Family Feud game show with her family.
Want to try out for Family Feud?
Follow these tips to stand out from the crowd 1. Show plenty of enthusiasm. Family Feud producers look for contestants who have
charisma, stand out, and make things interesting. 2. Dress to impress. Keep clothing modest, but attractive. Don’t wear blue or black,
since they tend to blend in with the set. If a family member is in the military, have them wear their uniform. 3. Know the rules of the
show, and play the game well. 4. If there aren’t tryouts in your area, record an interesting home video that might take you to the next
level. The show website provides guidelines. Be creative and let your personality shine through.
To advertise, call 281-579-7944 or email [email protected] sugar land magazine • 77