The April 23 episode of the ABC revival of “American Idol” will see the Top 14 cut down to the final 10 artists still in contention for the season 16 title. Each of the remaining contestants sang one song on Sunday’s show. Host Ryan Seacrest will reveal which six number among America’s favorites and have earned places in the Top 10. The other eight will then have to sing one more song. The three judges — Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie — will confer and choose the four to go on in the competition (and the four to be sent home).
The season 16 Top 14 are: Gabby Barrett, Jonny Brenns, Marcio Donaldson, Cade Foehner, Caleb Lee Hutchinson, Garrett Jacobs, Jurnee, Mara Justine, Dennis Lorenzo, Maddie Poppe, Michelle Sussett, Catie Turner, Ada Vox and Michael J. Woodard.
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Below, follow along with all the action on the April 23 episode of “American Idol.”
8:00 p.m. – Last night the Top 14 left it all on the stage in hopes that viewers would vote them into the Top 10. Which six earned their place outright? Which four will the judges save? And who will be sent packing? Let’s get started!
8:05 p.m. – It turns out EVERYONE is going to sing tonight, despite the results. The contestants will be called forward in random order to find out their results before their performance. Then they will either take a seat in the “safe zone” or the “danger zone.”
8:08 p.m. – First up is Maddie. After a dramatic pause from Ryan, he informs her that she is safe! I was pretty certain she would make it. I thought she was the best performance of the night on Monday. Tonight she’s singing “Walk Like an Egyptian.” She’s her usual folksy self, but this is a far cry from a championship performance. She’s lucky she was voted through already because this performance is thoroughly underwhelming. Katy appears to be enjoying the more fun side of Maddie, but Luke looks bored, confused or both.
8:13 p.m. – Up next is Michelle, who was told she did NOT earn enough votes to guarantee her spot next week. Tonight, she’s singing an original song she wrote titled, “I’m a Dreamer.” I have always found Michelle to be the least impressive vocalist in the Top 14 and she isn’t impressing me tonight either. Singing this unrecognizable original song shows terrible judgment. It’s not something that will make viewers take notice. But it seems like all Michelle needs to do is sing a few lines in Spanish to send Katy into a frenzy as if she’s never heard a foreign language in music before. I think Michelle should be eliminated, but the judge’s seem to think America is blind to her superstar powers.
8:20 p.m. – Next to hear his fate is Marcio. NO! Marcio was not voted through and he looks devastated. Pick yourself up and sing man! After just a few seconds, Marcio dusts himself off and performs “Jealous.” He’s a little stiff on stage and Lionel is giving him a death stare as if to challenge him to come out of his shell. Overall, the performance was heartfelt but a little boring. Katy was on her feet at the end, so hopefully she will fight to save him. Luke said the performance wasn’t very strong. Katy expresses to Marcio that the lesson he needs to take away is that he’s always been enough, whether he wins or not. Lionel told Marcio to know that this is not the end, it’s just the beginning of his journey. I’m not a fortune-teller but those words made it seem as though the judge will be sending Marcio home tonight. I want Marcio to stay!
8:30 p.m. – Up next Cade is in the hot seat. It’s no surprise Cade was voted through. To celebrate he’s singing “Bright Lights,” a bluesy rock song that allows him to swing his body back and forth for three minutes and work the hair like he tends to do. I’ve never heard this song before and his performance doesn’t make me want to hear it again. I’m just not feeling these contestants tonight. Someone needs to bring it like they mean it! The judges gave him a standing ovation.
8:36 p.m. – What does the future hold for Garrett? I’ll be shocked if he was voted through but only Ryan knows the answer. Garrett is in fact in the danger zone. Fighting for his place he’s performing “Have You Ever Seen the Rain.” I love this song so no complains from me on that front. I really like this performance! He seems so much more relaxed and comfortable on stage today. I love the falsetto notes he injected into the performance. Was it enough to break into the Top 10? I’m not sure but Katy and Luke were on their feet. They applauded his vocals for the most part but Lionel questioned “Who are you?” Lionel doesn’t think Garrett has shown them.
8:45 p.m. – Up next is Gabby and we all know she’s going to make it. She slayed last night. Ryan confirmed everyone’s thoughts Gabby took the stage to perform “Little Red Wagon.” Within about five seconds she showed she’s ready to wipe the floor with the competition if they don’t step up their game. I love the attitude and the stage presence she exudes and her confidence is level 10 at this point. The judges look blown away. Send this girl straight to the finale!
8:50 p.m. – Up next in the hot seat is Dennis. After the nation-wide vote, Dennis is in the danger zone. Fighting for his life in the competition, Dennis is singing “This Woman’s Worth.” I love this song. Can he handle the powerful falsetto notes of Maxwell? Based on the first verse, yes. Wow! Dennis knows exactly where he’s going within this song and I like this even better than his Monday performance. That’s how you fight for your life! The judges were all on their feet and will almost certainly save him tonight. Bravo! Luke and Katy both stated they would fight for Dennis, basically confirming he’s safe. Lionel said he’s never questioned his country before, but America does not know what they’re doing when it comes to this vote.
9:00 p.m. – One of the least experienced performers, Jonny, has not advanced into the Top 10 based on America’s votes. The judges look shocked. I’m not sure why because he was not one of the top six performers last night. Tonight he’s slowing things down with “Demons.” It’s a stripped-down version of the Imagine Dragons tune and successfully showed a more serious side of the big goofball. I think that was a smart move for him and it seems to resonate with the audience. The judges are on their feet. It was a nice performance, but not worth the standing-O. It may be enough to convince the judges to keep him around though.
9:08 p.m. – The next person to move into the Top 10 is…Caleb Lee! After breathing a sigh of relief, Caleb steps to the stage to sing “Getting You Home.” Caleb’s voice is effortless and that’s what makes him so easy to watch. With some of the others I’m almost watching at the edge of my seat hoping they can just make it through unscathed. Caleb is solid as a rock and I enjoy all of his performances.
9:15 p.m. – It’s time for Mara to take her turn on the stage. After the nation-wide vote, Mara was not voted through. Can she convince the judges to keep her? She will be singing “Love on the Brain” for her chance. Already she has improved so much since last night. She’s still a little over-dramatic with her stage antics but her lower register sounds FIRE! She should utilize that more often. She knocked that one out of the park! The judges are on their feet.
9:25 p.m. – Next up is Jurnee. I can’t imagine her not going through because she was a ball of energy last night and the safe zone is looking a little empty. But wait a minute, she was NOT voted through! WOW! The judges look shocked. She’s singing “Never Enough” from “The Greatest Showman.” I love it when she sings ballads. Her voice is gorgeous and her face simply magnetic. Jurnee delivered under pressure and the judges are absolutely nuts if they don’t save her.
9:30 p.m. – Next to learn his fate is Michael. Michael has quickly become my favorite in the competition and apparently others agree. Michael is in the Top 10! The judges did a happy dance. Tonight he is singing “Believe In Yourself” from “The Wiz.” Once again, he proves his song selection is all over the board and I absolutely love it. Michael is like pure joy on stage. The judges look like they are about to burst with pride. I still would like to hear if Michael has another octave in that belting range, but regardless he’s got my vote!
9:31 p.m. – Two of the season’s most popular contestants remain, but only one will get that sixth spot in the safe zone. I have said for weeks that I don’t think America as a whole is ready to crown a drag queen the “American Idol” so I worry for Ada’s safety, despite having the biggest voice this season. Catie has been a bit polarizing between fans who love her silly antics and those who find her to be a bit “too much.” Which one secured the votes? We will find out soon!
9:40 p.m. – The person final person to be voted through by America is Catie. Wow. Ada nailed her performance last night so if that can’t get her into the Top 6 that’s really saying something. Catie is performing an acoustic version of “Havana.” This is a little edgy for Catie and I like it! Go ahead girl! I love her look tonight as well, she is quickly displaying every bit the “full package” the judges so often talk about. She’s definitely in her own lane. I’m happy for her. Great job!
9:45 p.m. – Now Ada will have to fight for her place in the Top 10. She’s covered in as much glitter and gold as a chandelier at Caesar’s Palace. Her dramatic looks and performances add so much fun to this show! She just can’t be eliminated anytime soon. I need Ada to make it at least halfway through this season. The good news is that Ada looks PUMPED for this performance. She’s singing the perfect song too: “And I Am Telling You I Am Not Going” from “Dreamgirls.” I have to say, this song isn’t translating as well as I would have hoped. It’s the first time this season I felt like I was at a drag show, not at a singer’s concert. Also, her notes really flew off the rails at various points. It’s almost like she pushed TOO hard. The live audience positively loves her though! Katy stopped the show, pulled off her earrings to make a dramatic statement. An executive decision was made to immediately move Ada into the Top 10!
9:59 p.m. – Only three more people will advance to the Top 10! Joining the others to perform next week are: Jurnee, Michelle and Dennis. I am thrilled Jurnee and Dennis can move forward. I’m sad to see Marcio go. Mara, Garrett and Jonny were also eliminated. Next week, the Top 10 will be performing Disney classics. That should be interesting!
The Top 10: Maddie Poppe, Cade Foehner, Gabby Barrett, Caleb Lee Hutchinson, Michael J. Woodard, Catie Turner, Ada Vox, Jurnee, Michelle Sussett and Dennis Lorenzo.