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American Idol Fodder

American Idol: Salt Lake City Auditions

Salt Lake City might possibly go down in history as the most polite city "American Idol" has ever visited.

8-SaltLakeCity.jpgWhen the judges usually break the news to the thousands of horrible hopefuls who expect to hear "You're Going to Hollywood," but instead hear "maybe physics is the right career path for you," a good majority of people cry, scream or wave their middle finger at the camera as they stomp on home. But as we saw tonight, the most common phrase we heard from contestants was "thank you." What a change! Does this mean "Idol" has lots its oomph? Is this the death knell for a show that once thrived on the wacky antics of its fervent fanbase?

Um, not quite. For a minute there it was almost time to pack it in. I was ready to gather up my "Idol" statistical charts and take down my "I Heart Paula" posters, my confidence in the show wavering. That was until I saw "Idol's" saving grace- Greg the Rabbit. There is absolutely nothing like a man in a giant pink bunny costume to restore your faith in the crazies that call the auditions round home. Greg, a close personal friend of auditioner Chris Kirkham, hopped, skipped and generally creeped everyone out while his friend sang his song for the judges. Simon was completely distracted (either because of the giant bunny bouncing in the background or the fact Kirkham had Simon's face on the end of a Popsicle stick), and Chris was sent packin'. Randy said he liked the bunny better than Chris, to which Greg responded by firmly squeezing Simon and picking him clear off the floor. Like I said, "Idol's" back, baby!

There were plenty of other crazies tonight, but here's a review of some of the dozen people who actually won a yellow ticket in Utah:

-Frankie Jordan: She picked an interesting song choice, "You Know I'm No Good" by Amy Winehouse, and impressed the judges. Simon definitely liked her, impressed by both her voice and her look.

-Megan Corkrey: With an old-fashioned sounding voice, this young mother made an impression on Simon with her take on "Can't Help Loving that Man of Mine." He called her one of his favorites and said "you're different...I'll remember you." I think her distinctive voice will carry her through to the semifinals.

-Austin Sisneros: This senior class president said he just wants to "inspire" people, but it took him a few tries to get any inspiration from the judges. First he adequately sang a song by Train. The judges were a tad underwhelmed. So he sang his next choice, "It Takes a Village," which I'm pretty sure he said was by Raffi, the famous children's singer. Randy said it best when he proclaimed those were some weird song choices, but everyone seemed to see some potential in good ol' Austin. I'm hoping he'll pick some more current songs to sing in Hollywood. If he makes it through, I see a little David Archuleta potential in this kid.

-Taylor Vaifanua: I still don't believe this girl is 16 years old. Doesn't she seem at least 10 years older than that? Anyway, she sang amazingly on "Joyful Joyful" and surprised everyone with her layered vocals. Randy was incredibly impressed and said she was "the best voice I've heard all season." I'll be interested to see if she'll have staying power in this competition like Jordin Sparks, who was also pretty young during her season, or if her age will slow her down.

-Rose Flack: And in our "Most inspirational/heartwrenching moment" spot tonight was Rose Flack. She lost both her parents only a few years apart, and at a young age, and now lives with a foster family. Her story was touching, but I wondered just how good she was. As it turns out, our girl Rose is good. Very good. She has an old-school sound to her voice and has an alternative/hippie-esque style. I thought she hit a grand slam with her take on Carole King's "I Feel the Earth Move" and so did most of the judges. And just like he told Megan Corkrey, Simon said he was going to remember Rose. Here's hoping she doesn't wilt in Hollywood.

Wait, the fun isn't over yet! There's more "Idol" tomorrow night as the show descends on two locales: New York and Puerto Rico! See you then! -Chris Sardelli

Posted by Chris on January 28, 2009 10:17 PM
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