ENCINITAS — Friends and students of San Dieguito High School Academy music director Jeremy Wuertz gathered excitedly at Round Table Pizza the first week of January to join Wuertz for the airing of “Wheel of Fortune” on which Wuertz was a contestant. Wuertz has been teaching music at the academy for five years.
No one yet knew how Wuertz had fared on the quiz show, but hopes were high and they were not disappointed. In the end, Wuertz came home with $10,000 in cash and prizes, including a trip to St. Maarten.
He auditioned at an open call at Valley View Casino and was called up to the stage. Potential contestants play a simulated game, do an on-stage interview, have their picture taken. A few days later, he received an e-mail inviting him to a second audition at the Sheraton Carlsbad with another 80 people. The group played more simulated games, in addition to completing a five-minute written test. Finally, a few days later, he got a voice mail inviting me to a show taping Oct. 15, and it was one of six shows filmed that day.
Between taping and the eventual airing of the show, contestants are sworn to secrecy on the outcome.
“When I am asked how I did on the show, I liked to say that I had moments of fortune and moments of misfortune,” Wuertz said. “It was an incredibly fun experience for me, as I have watched the show since I was a child.”