After six weeks of inspirational success stories, crushing personal defeats and a subplot about an exotic dancer singing her way out of the clerb, American Idol has finally wrapped another season of auditions.
And there’s been no shortage of talent in the show’s 21st season, with the judges — Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie — striking gold in Las Vegas, New Orleans and Nashville.
While you might say it’s too early to start playing favorites, that isn’t stopping us from singling out some of our favorite contestants ahead of Hollywood Week, which airs as a two-part event beginning this Sunday (ABC, 8/7c).
Is it possible that several, even many, of these contestants will reach the end of their journeys in the coming days? Yes, because Hollywood Week has always been an unpredictable beast.
But as you go back and revisit these strong auditions, just know that one of them very well could end up becoming the next American Idol. It’s anyone’s game!
Read on to see which 20 Idol hopefuls we’re keeping an eye on as the competition continues (in alphabetical order), then drop a comment with your own thoughts below: Do you have any early favorites? And which singer(s) would you add to our list?