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Tag: American Idol (14-26 of 349)

'Idol' Exit Interview: Malaya Watson on her emotional goodbye, J.Lo comparing her to Michael Jackson -- VIDEO

It was an emotional night on American Idol as Malaya Watson, the 16-year-old Michigan native firecracker, was the latest finalist voted out of the competition. Watson chose to sing a Chaka Kahn song for the ’80s night performances, but unlike her song choice “Through the Fire”, Malaya didn’t make it through the next round. Watson was joined in the bottom two by C.J. Harris, her duet partner the night before. EW sat down with an emotional Watson after her elimination. READ FULL STORY

David Cook on his 'Idol' return and why the '80s rocked

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It was a blast from the past in many ways Wednesday night on American Idol. Season 7 winner David Cook returned to mentor the top 8 finalists on ‘80s night, a theme the rocker absolutely crushed during his season with “Hello” by Lionel Richie and later “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson. Cook brought a needed new perspective for the contestants on how to perform on live television and what it’s like to be going through the crazy process. EW caught up with Cook on the phone after the performances to ask what it was like to be back at IdolREAD FULL STORY

'American Idol' exit interview: Majesty Rose talks tour, having her own kid's show -- VIDEO

Majesty Rose may have sung “Happy” on American Idol, but how is she feeling now that she’s been eliminated?

Rose is the latest finalist let go on Idol after a shaky performance of Florence and the Machine’s “Shake it Out” on Wednesday night. Rose was joined by Sam Woolf and C.J. Harris in the bottom three in a quick elimination. Though Jennifer Lopez said she thought one of the performers sounded better live than on TV, she wouldn’t reveal which of the bottom three she was referring to. Well, the judges once again didn’t use their save and EW talked to Majesty right after the elimination, as well as on camera in our offices Friday. READ FULL STORY

'Idol' Exit Interview: M.K. Nobilette talks to EW after fourth elimination

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M.K. Nobilette’s less-than-perfect performance wasn’t a hit with America.

Nobilette was the fourth finalist voted off American Idol Thursday night after singing Pink’s “Perfect” during the Top 10′s performance night of Top 10 hits. M.K. Nobilette, Majesty Rose and Dexter Roberts rounded out the bottom three —  Majesty for the second week in a row, while M.K. hit the bottom for the third time this season. After an emotional goodbye from the judges, M.K. talked to EW after the elimination. READ FULL STORY

'American Idol': Harry Connick Jr. on his 'harsh' nickname, the most frustrating part of being a judge

When Harry Connick Jr. joined the judging panel of American Idol this season, fans were hit with a fresh perspective behind the desk with some musical critiques that hadn’t been heard in the show’s previous 12 seasons. Connick had appeared on the show before as a mentor and was a fan in the past, watching with his family at home. But following in the footsteps of Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson, Connick took his role as judge pretty seriously from the moment he was hired, as frustrating as it may be.

“The most frustrating thing is that the job is to judge,” Connick told EW. “It’s not to be a mentor, it’s not to be a cheerleader, it’s not to be best friends, it’s not to wrap the kids up in a blanket and try to give them as much information that you can; it’s to judge. And that’s what I was hired to do. You have about 30 seconds to be very succinct with information that you think will help them to grow and you know, like, a woman came up to me the other day who I’ve known for years and said, ‘You use the word “sharp” a lot. What does that mean?’ I was shocked, and this was someone I’ve known for 10 or 15 years and I was like, ‘Really?’ That’s something you learn on the first day of music class. Some of these kids don’t even know that. So I wish this was a six-hour show and I could give them information, but that’s not the gig.” READ FULL STORY

'Idol' Exit Interview: Ben Briley talks to EW after third elimination

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Well, we know what Ben Briley won’t be doing this summer!

Briley missed out on this year’s top 10 and therefore, the annual summer tour. The bottom three featured two boys for the first time —  fan favorite Sam Woolf and a hatless Briley, along with a very brave Majesty Rose who tackled “Let it Go” from Frozen on this week’s cinema-themed night. Jennifer Lopez said the bottom three made sense to her based on their performances and only .07% separated Briley and Rose from the final elimination. EW talked to Briley right after his elimination about his new look and defending himself against the judges’ comments.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How are you feeling?

BEN BRILEY: I’m fine. I’m ready to go home. I’m tired.

It looked like you were expecting some bad news tonight.

I was. I knew it was going to happen. I was expecting to be there. I knew I was going to be in the bottom three because I had a weak performance [Wednesday] night, and I knew I could do better than that. I just wanted to show people that I could do something different and that didn’t pay off and that’s fine, it doesn’t matter. Musicians don’t prepare for one show a week only, week-to-week and then don’t have to do it again. Real musicians don’t have to worry about that. I’m ready to get this show behind me and start making my own music. READ FULL STORY

'Idol' Exit Interview: Emily Piriz talks to EW after second elimination

America did not get loud for Emily Piriz.

The 18-year-old Florida native was the second finalist sent home by America’s vote on American Idol. Piriz sang “Let’s Get Loud” by judge Jennifer Lopez on Wednesday night’s “Home” themed show. Though Lopez liked the performance, Piriz still got the boot. For the second week in a row, the bottom three was a girl’s club with MK Nobilette and Jena Irene joining Piriz in “the most hated stools in television,” as host Ryan Seacrest noted. EW talked to Emily Piriz right after the elimination to see how she feels.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How are you feeling?
EMILY PIRIZ: I’m okay. This has been an incredible experience and everyone there is amazing and deserves to win, so it’s okay.

What was going through your mind after you were the first one sent into the bottom three?
I was a little nervous. I was like, ‘Okay, now let me think of my song and practice a little in my head just in case.’ I got nervous, but I wasn’t trying to put my hopes up too high before the show started so that whatever happens, happens.

READ FULL STORY

'Idol' exit interview: First eliminated contestant of the season speaks

Well, the first cut is the deepest.

That’s probably what Kristen O’Connor is telling herself this morning after being the first contestant eliminated on the 13th season of American Idol. The young beauty sang a Kelly Clarkson song on Wednesday night, but her time on the Idol stage won’t get the same happy ending.

READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' partners with Google, Facebook for new voting system

The competition on American Idol is finally getting started tonight, with the top 13 finalists performing for America’s vote. And now, for the first time ever, fans can show their support for their favorite performers with the help of Google and Facebook.

Starting on Wednesday night, voting will begin at the top of the performance show, and Idol fans will be able to vote for their favorite contestants via Google Search. The search-engine giant has partnered with Idol, and anytime a fan searches an Idol-related term, a voting window will appear on the search page. You can vote up to 50 times per contestant and can vote for as many contestants as you want. After casting their votes, fans will have the opportunity to share their votes on Google+, follow contestants, join community conversations, or participate in Google Hangouts about the show.

In addition to Google, American Idol has made a new friend with Facebook. Because the voting window is now open throughout the show, Facebook will present on-air visualizations of how the voting is progressing. Using real-time East Coast voting trends, viewers will get to see an array of voting information, such as demographic voting trends and relative contestant rankings, as it’s happening live.

Get a peek at what the new voting process will look like on your computer or iPad below: READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' live shows start tonight: Producers unveil new set, talk format changes for 'lucky' season 13

When American Idol‘s rush week begins Tuesday night, fans of the long-running singing competition will notice a couple of changes to the show. For one, what is Rush Week?

The new stage of the competition marks the beginning of the live shows for the 13th season, which welcomed back judges Keith Urban and Jennifer Lopez, as well as introducing fan favorite Harry Connick Jr. to the panel. The live shows will also feature a brand-new set created to tap into the energy of live music, which executive producer Evan Prager says is the core of the show. The complete 360-degree environment features two performance stages with the judges on a center platform. With fans seated up to the ceiling, set designer Baz Halpin said the intimate feeling will allow for multiple staging options and for the performers to move around more. Director Louis J. Horvitz says that the new set will also help get away from the repetition of the 13 weeks of live competition. Using cinematic framing, Horvitz is looking to draw the audience in not just as a rock concert though, but as a true narrative following the contestants, showing more reaction shots and time rehearsing and with their families. READ FULL STORY

Stupid Questions: 'Idol' judge Harry Connick Jr. on J.Lo's third arm, Keith Urban's fake accent, and laser dolphins

He has tickled the ivories to fame and acclaim. Now the 46-year-old jazz crooner/actor will tickle your funny bone as he plays along with Stupid Questions — and helps find the next singing champ as the new (and enthusiastically received) judge on Fox’s American Idol.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Sing me a song about how Idol is going to have a big comeback year. And make it something that really swings.
HARRY CONNICK JR.: I think I could do more of a hip-hop thing: I don’t drink/but if I had a beer/I’d tell you what/Idol‘s great this year/I’d drink some whiskey/I’d drink some wine/but by this time/I’d done run out of time.

That’s just off the top of your head?
Well, the middle of my head, where my mouth is. But I am doing a movie with a dolphin who has a hole on the top of her head.

We’ll get to Dolphin Tale 2 in a sec. The judges seem to be getting along so far. What will you do to fix this problem?
It’s all fake. Being up there with Jennifer Lawrence and Keith Sweat isn’t exactly my idea of a panel, so I got stuck and I gotta deal with it.

What is something surprising about Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban that may or may not be true?
The whole [in Australian accent] “Oh, I love it, mate. Yeeh, it’s griite” — Keith is actually from Brooklyn. His name is, like, Frank Clemente. And Jennifer has a third arm. She’s a beautiful woman, but it’s a little off-putting. It comes straight out of the middle of her back like a fin. It’s a functioning third arm. It’s got a hand, and it can sign contracts. If you’ve ever wondered why she’s able to wear those sexy dresses and not have a wardrobe malfunction, it’s because that third arm is holding it in place.
READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' judges Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr. talk audition rounds -- VIDEO

American Idol‘s new season is in full swing on Fox and though the season kicked off with a ratings low note for the series, if you ask EW recapper Annie Barrett, the new judges panel was a rousing success, praising Harry Connick Jr. for his honest judging approach.

When EW caught up with him and fellow judge Keith Urban during the Television Critics Association press tour this week, he opened up about his approach to critiques, citing his willingness to be blunt as a necessary skill. “Sometimes it’s best to cut to the chase and say, ‘I didn’t like that. Here’s why,’” he said. “…I think honesty has to be the source of every single comment.”

Watch more from our chat with the duo below. READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' returns to worst premiere ratings yet despite Harry Connick Jr.

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Unlucky 13?

American Idol returned Wednesday night to once again post its lowest premiere rating ever. The 13th season of Fox’s veteran reality series delivered 15 million viewers and a 4.6 adults 18-49 rating, down 23 percent from last year — even though new judge Harry Connick Jr. is getting glowing reviews from critics and fans.

The performance continues an overall downward trend for the series since 2006, and the show’s premiere ratings have dropped consistently since 2010. It’s a testament to how massive the show’s ratings were in its early years that Idol has managed to fall in the Nielsen numbers for eight years straight and still deliver strong ratings. But there was some mild hope this year might avoid yet another dip given how strong the drops have been — surely it was time for a least a little uptick, right? By comparison, The Voice debuted to 14.9 million viewers and a 5.1 adult demo rating in the fall, marking the first time Idol has premiered to a lower demo rating than its NBC rival. At least Idol can claim it won the night — the show hugely dominated Wednesday’s ratings.

As a counterpoint, Fox noted that this is the network’s biggest night of entertainment programming so far this season and the first time in three years that Idol has returned higher than its previous year’s finale.

Idol‘s tone during last night’s Austin audition kick-off was notably friendlier among the judges, a departure from last season’s tense drama-filled panel that featured Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey (both of whom are no longer on the show). Some critics have suspected that Idol is taking a cue from the success of The Voice, which has a panel that’s often praised for its feel-good camaraderie. Connick Jr. shared the table with returning judges Keith Urban and Jennifer Lopez (the latter returning to the show after a one-year absence). Fox also made changes behind the scenes this year, shedding longtime producers Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick and bringing aboard Per Blankens, Jesse Ignjatovic and Evan Prager.

One question hanging over these numbers: Will A&E’s Duck Dynasty, which also returned last night, deliver a bigger rating? It’s not likely, but it is possible. EW’s Idol recap here, Duck Dynasty recap here. Update: Duck Dynasty ratings are in.

Here’s Idol‘s full-season averages over the years (remember, the first season aired during the summer): READ FULL STORY

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