Hollywood Week continued on American Idol Monday night, with the contestants finishing up the group round and moving on to solos. The hopefuls sang their hearts out, and then found out who among them would be moving on to the next round at Disney’s Aulani resort in Hawaii.
This episode also had a couple of surprises up its sleeve. The first one (a proposal) wasn’t too surprising to us, since the show teased it in promos. But it was certainly surprising to the contestant getting proposed to. The other surprise involves the number of contestants who were let through to the next round at the end of the episode.
Ain’t Goin’ Home, “For The Longest Time”
When we last saw this group rehearsing, Nate Walker had to leave in an ambulance. After returning from the hospital, his voice was still scratchy, and he chose to sing a shorter solo. However, the judges asked him to sing the full version out of fairness. Although he struggled through it, he didn’t go home. In fact, everyone in the group (including Logan Johnson, Cazzie White, and Ruthie Craft) made it through, living up to their name.
The first solo performance of the night came from this young singer, who was modest about his chances of winning the whole show (although his mom believes in him). He chose to sing “Your Song” by Elton John, and earned a standing ovation from the judges. “Harry Potter can sing!” Katy Perry declared.
Katy warned Juan not to be too “queso” after his last performance, so he tried to show a different side of himself. He was perhaps a little too confident in his performance of “Million Reasons” by Lady Gaga. Katy said it was “not great” vocally, although Juan Pablo thought it “went perfectly.”
Ryan shared the emotional story of his weight loss surgery in his audition. He said he’s been working on feeling confident, and gave a strong performance of Adele’s “All I Ask” for his solo. It was so good, the judges stood up for him.
Kai The Singer
This young singer shared that her family had dealt with homelessness, and her church raised money for her to audition for the show. Coming to Hollywood was a big change for her, marking her first time on a plane and even an escalator. She performed “Lost Without You” by Freya Ridings, and although Katy said she seemed nervous, Luke liked what he heard.
Riley Thompson, Raquel Trinidad, Evelyn Cormier
Katy encouraged the contestants to choose solo songs that “pull at people’s heartstrings,” and advised against performing original songs. Riley, Raquel, and Evelyn all demonstrated strong choices. Riley sang “Ring of Fire” by Johnny Cash, Raquel sang “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” by Roberta Flack, and Evelyn chose “Wonderwall” by Oasis. “She just took her spot,” Katy said of Evelyn.
Eddie went against Katy’s advice and performed an original song called “1974,” which he said was a “stream of consciousness” song about his life. The judges weren’t impressed by the choice, with Katy calling it a “bad song,” although she praised his voice.
This show favorite also took a risk by singing an original song, called “Ten Years.” He said he wrote it about someone he cares about, and the song choice paid off. Lionel said he “stops traffic,” and Katy said they are “lucky to have him on the show.”
Margie had a hard time during rehearsals, as she broke down in tears from exhaustion. However, she pulled it together for a performance of “Never Enough” from The Greatest Showman. Luke said he doesn’t think Margie knows how good she is.
After forgetting the lyrics to “California Dreamin'” and trying to cheat by writing the words on his arm, Wade chose an original song called “Stay.” He managed to remember the lyrics, since he wrote them. However, the judges weren’t convinced by the song choice.
Nate returned from the hospital to sing Willie Nelson’s “Always on My Mind” for his solo performance. He powered through his sickness, but unfortunately the judges didn’t seem impressed. Katy said his singing was “all over the place.”
This singer was unsure of his talent before the show, and hadn’t performed out of a fear he’d mess up. His family encouraged him, and he made it this far. He chose to sing “Broken Halos” by Chris Stapleton, but forgot the words in the middle of the song. Tyler was upset with himself, thinking he let his family down.
This hard-working teenager happened to choose the same song as Nate for his own solo — “Always on My Mind.” He said he was singing for his single mom, who works two jobs. “I love his texture,” Lionel said after the performance.
This subway performer said she’s proud to represent her “Latin roots” on American Idol. She chose to sing Ariana Grande’s “God Is a Woman” for her solo, and Lionel said he was “proud” of her.
Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon
Although Jeremiah’s family does not accept his homosexuality and did not come to Hollywood to support him, his boyfriend John was there for him. Jeremiah chose another repeat song, “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” and blew the judges away. Luke called him an “amazing singer.”
Kate said she wanted to “showcase my artistry and what I do” by performing “Daughters” by John Mayer on the guitar. Lionel said her voice was “strong as heck.”
Myra Tran & Shayy
Both of these singers went viral after their auditions, earning a combined 50 million views. They both struggled a bit during rehearsals, but managed to pull out fantastic solo performances. Myra sang “I Put a Spell on You,” while Shayy performed “Cry Pretty” by Carrie Underwood.
Laci Kaye Booth
Laci watched American Idol growing up, so she knew just how challenging Hollywood Week can be. Her performance of “Stars” by Grace Potter earned a standing ovation from the judges, with Lionel declaring, “I love her voice.”
This singer dedicated his performance of Alessia Cara’s “Scars to Your Beautiful” to his younger sister Angel. He said he wanted to “tone it down” instead of his usual flashy style. It paid off, as the judges stood up for him.
Madison originally intended to sing an original song, but her vocal coaches advised against it, so she decided to change her song to Adele’s “All I Ask.” It was a great song choice, and although she said she was nervous, the judges were blown away by her performance.
Austin Michael Robinson
This lassoing teen originally planned to sing “Speechless” by Dan + Shay, but changed his mind at the last minute and chose to sing “Parachute” by Chris Stapleton. Although the judges applauded, Katy called it his “worst performance.”
This singer returned after being eliminated last season. She’s determined not to get another “no,” and chose to sing “What About Us” by Pink during her solo performance. Katy seemed to like it.
The very last performance of the night also had the moment we were all waiting for. Johanna said she wished her boyfriend Matt could be with her in Hollywood, but he was taking finals. After her performance of “Wicked Game” by Chris Isaak, Matt surprised her by showing up to propose. She said yes, and Katy was in tears.
Who Made It Through Hollywood Week?
The judges initially told the contestants that they would be narrowing down the group to 30. They put them in three rooms and delivered their fates in each room. Some of the contestants in the first room included Alejandro Aranda, Drake McCain, Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon, Margie Mays, Madison Vandenberg, Kate Barnette, Laci Kaye Booth, Walker Burroughs, Uché, Shayy, Kai the Singer, Johanna Jones, Evelyn Cormier, and Ryan Hammond. They were all put through to the next round.
In the next room, the judges delivered the bad news that the contestants would be going home. This included such artists as Juan Pablo and Austin Michael Robinson.
In the third room, the judges delivered a surprise. First, Luke Bryan made it seem like they were going home, saying their “time here in Hollywood is over.” But what he meant was that they were going to Hawaii! Some of the contestants who made it through are Eddie Island, Myra Tran, Tyler Mitchell, Wade Cota, Bumbly, Raquel Trinidad, Nate Walker, Riley Thompson, Logan Johnson, and Alyssa Raghu.
The singers who made it through will have to work hard in Hawaii, because of half of them will be eliminated to form the Top 20.