Meet Alyssa Wray, ‘American Idol’s Top 10 Powerhouse
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One of the standout performers on Season 19 of American Idol is Alyssa Wray. The singer was just voted into the Top 10, for a chance at winning the entire show. The 19-year-old has a powerhouse voice and an amazing stage presence.
5 Facts About Alyssa Wray
This Wasn’t Her First Time Auditioning
For her audition this year, Wray blew the judges away with her rendition of “I Am Changing,” sung by former Idol contestant Jennifer Hudson in Dreamgirls. But this wasn’t the first time she’s tried out for the show. Wray previously auditioned when she was still in high school.
“When it happened I called my mom and cried,” Wray said in an interview about finding out she would be on American Idol. “I had auditioned my sophomore year (of high school) and did not get past the first round. Now I have made it to meet the celebrity judges.”
Wray is Currently a College Student
Wray is studying musical theater at Northern Kentucky University. She said her professors were “super supportive” about her decision to compete on American Idol.
“I was asking how we were going to work around my schedule, because it’s going to be super busy, and they were just so wonderful,” she said in an interview. “They were so lenient; they just wanted me to come, you know, chase my dream.
Wray is the Tallest Girl in Her Hometown
Wray is over six feet tall. She told the American Idol judges that she might be the tallest girl in her small town of Perryville, Ky. She said in an interview that she was an “oddball” growing up.
Check out how tall Wray is compared to her mom in the above photo. The singer used her height to her advantage by playing basketball in high school.
“I still miss basketball so much,” she told local news.
She Has a TikTok Account
Wray has over 66,000 followers and 1.7 million likes on TikTok, where she’s been posting about her time on Idol. Before that, she frequently posted clips of herself singing.
Wray Believes Representation is Important
In addition to being taller than her peers, Wray told local news that she was one of only a few Black students in her classes growing up.
“That has a lot to do with how you develop as a person, when you don’t really see yourself anywhere, and you just kind of stand out,” she said.
Wray said she wants to help young people feel represented through her talent for performing.
“I want them to feel seen because I feel like if I had seen more of myself on the TV or in my community as I was growing up, just someone who was different and was unashamed to be different, I might have not have had to deal with so much insecurity and heartache, you know?” she said.
“So I’m really hoping I just create a space that younger kids, and even adults, can look at and be like, ‘Hey, she is different, but she is cool. She’s out there doing her thing, she’s singing, she’s following her dream and I want that to inspire them to do that too.”
Watch Wray perform next on American Idol during Disney Night on May 2 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.