History will be made on “American Idol” this season with a new Showstopper round added to Hollywood Week. On Night 8 of season 19, which airs March 28, judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie will decided which of the 64 remaining contestants will get to sing for America’s vote.
After the two nights of Showstoppers, only two dozen artists will make the cut. This top tier of performers will then fight it out for the chance to be on the live shows, which begin in early April. At that point, you will be able to predict the outcome of each episode in our predictions center.
Below, follow along with all the action in our live blog of the Night 8 Season 19 episode of “American Idol.”
8:00 p.m. — The new Showstoppers round begins tonight on “American Idol,” where each singer will have to prove whether or not they have the superstar qualities it takes to sing for America’s vote. The contestants will compete on the legendary Dolby stage for Katy and Luke, while due to a potential COVID-19 exposure, Lionel joins them in real time from quarantine at home. Following all of the performances, each contestant will be delivered their lifechanging results. Let’s get started!
8:07 p.m. — First up is Alyssa Wray singing “I’m Here” from “The Color Purple.” The 18-year old from Kentucky has been wowing the judges with her powerful vocals since her initial audition. Let’s just say, this song is not for the weak voiced and Alyssa is dropping jaws immediately as Lionel yells, “Boom!” from his swanky mancave. After leaving it all on the stage, Katy seems less impressed, telling Luke, “That was too much vocal gymnastics.” Katy thinks Alyssa is psyching herself out from hearing the other talent and overbaked this performance. Luckily, we don’t have to wait long to hear her final judgement because they cut right to it! Luke says it’s a fine line for her to control her powerhouse voice. Katy says Alyssa has the talent, but she can’t just throw 52 cards at their faces. After teasing her a bit, Luke reveals that Alyssa has made it into the next round.
8:20 p.m. — Hoping to also get the “yes” of a lifetime is Los Angeles standout, Jason Warrior. You may remember him if you watched “The Four,” where he got into it with a famous panelist from that show, Meghan Trainor. Hoping to redeem himself from his past mistakes, the 25-year old is taking a risk by singing a rock song, “Believer,” by Imagine Dragons. He certainly has passion and powerful chops, but will the judges respond to this performance? Lionel certainly seems to be as he punches the air from home. Luke and Katy give him a standing ovation as Luke screams, “Unbelievable!” Lionel will be delivering the news to Jason and says the singer can have a tendency to overdo his performances. And as tears stream down Jason’s face, Lionel let’s him know he’s made the Top 24. They’re so cruel! But Jason falls to his knees in disbelief and his grateful to have advanced to the next stage of the competition.
8:30 p.m. — Next up is Alex Miller, a 17-year old country singer from Kentucky. Luke says Alex has a natural gift of making people smile, but is it enough for the country boy to make the Top 24? The judges have been encouraging Alex to try something more modern, so when he begins his Showstopper performance of “Silver Wings” by Merle Haggard, Luke instantly looks annoyed. But Alex has modernized the song and hopes it’s enough. Luke says Alex is hard not to watch, but Katy found the performance totally average. At his final judgment, Luke says Alex is trapped in throwback country and needs to carve out his own lane. For now, Alex’s journey is ending. But Luke has one more surprise for the youngster. He got him a gig performing at the Grand Ole Opry! And for an added bonus, Luke will perform with him.
8:40 p.m. — A 23-year old Andrea Valles is next and the Texan is singing “Blinding Lights” by The Weeknd. Her performance is “not up to par” according to Lionel and heavily edited so we don’t see the full song, but it’s still good news. Andrea is moving on to the Top 24. Back inside, 24-year old Chayce Beckham is the next to hear his verdict. He sings “You Should Probably Leave” by Chris Stapleton and the country crooner from California capitalizes on his gravely vocals, earning a big smile from Lionel. But Katy thinks his voice already sounds shot and Luke says the song was very “linear.” But he gets one more play! Chayce is heading to the the next round.
8:55 p.m. — 16-year old Caleb Kennedy barely made it through the Duets round, but now hopes to redeem himself with a performance of one of his original songs, “When You Leave Tonight.” During rehearsals he just wasn’t feeling the band, so he’s decided to go at it alone with his guitar. The judges didn’t love the song, but the South Carolina teenager will continue rockin’ his mullet into the next round.
9:10 p.m. — We return to the Showstoppers in the middle of Wyatt Pike‘s performance of “Blame it On Me” by George Ezra. The 19-year old from Utah brings a smile to Katy’s face with his indie-folk vibe. It earns him a standing ovation and Lionel loves his style. At his final judgment, Katy says he has had incredible growth right before their eyes. He has earned his way into the Top 24. But what does the future hold for his Hollywood duet partner, Cassandra Coleman? The 24-year old from Tennessee is singing “Running With the Wolves” by Aurora, and she’s been a bundle of nerves leading up to this. She plants her bare feet on the stage and lets it fly, but isn’t quite confident yet. Katy says Cassandra reminds her of Florence Welch, and holds something very unique and pure. The problem is that Cassandra isn’t consistent, but she is too good to let go. She’s made the Top 24! After hearing the great news, Cassandra asks with tears in her eyes, “How do I gain confidence?” Katy tells her to trust that they can see her beauty.
9:25 p.m. — A pair of contestants will hear their fate simultaneously in the next segment. Anthony Guzman sings “This Love” by Maroon 5 and Amanda Mena sings “All By Myself” by Celine Dion. Anthony is having fun on stage and wants to really let loose with a fun, up-tempo number. Taking the opposite approach, Amanda sings one of the most epic power ballads in pop music history. Neither approach pays off as Lionel delivers both Anthony and Amanda the devastating news that their journeys have ended. Hoping for better news is Beane, the 23-year old from Boston who was compared to Mr. Rogers at his audition, but is now giving me George Michael with his one dangling earring and some painted nails. He’s singing “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye and the judges seem to be loving this stage performance, which feels completely contrived to me. But the judges know what they want and Beane is heading into the Top 24.
9:40 p.m. — Next up is 17-year old Mississippi native Hannah Everhart, a gritty country girl who has one of the most unique personalities this season. She’s singing “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus, which is a bit of a surprise to me. It’s not really connecting with me and I don’t think this song suits her voice. But the judges see something special in this youngster and she’s heading straight into the Top 24. Hoping his dreams also take flight is Graham DeFranco singing “Beautiful War” by Kings of Leon. Just days after his audition his dad was diagnosed with stomach cancer, so tonight Graham dedicates his performance to his father. Luke loves Graham’s voice, but wasn’t crazy about the song choice. Luckily for Graham, he still did enough to crack the Top 24.
9:50 p.m. — One of the quirkiest performers (and perhaps my favorite up to this stage of the contest) is up next. Murphy has a degenerative eye disease and is completely blind in one eye while nearly there with the other. The constant comments to make eye contact with the audience has been hard for him because he finds the stage lights physically painful. Tonight Murphy is singing an original song called “Am I Still Mine?” The 27-year old from Baltimore caresses this bluesy folk song with his unique tone, earning a nod of approval from Katy. She says they believe in him, but he needs to go have more experiences. Unfortunately, he will not be moving on in this competition. And I think this was a terrible choice, but the judges have their reasons. Oh, and it’s his birthday. Sad!
9:59 p.m. — Last tonight is a double judgement for Casey Bishop and Alanis Sophia. They’re both teenagers and Alanis is up first singing “Uninvited” by, you guessed it, Alanis Morissette. This is a beautiful rendition and I actually really like her voice. I didn’t really remember her from previous rounds, but this is great! Next up is Casey, who is singing “She Talks to Angels” by The Black Crowes. She looks comfortable on stage, jumping around, but this song seems to put a little strain on her range. It wasn’t my favorite of her performances thus far. But she’s 15! And Luke finds her voice more “raw and real” than Alanis’. But which of them will make it into the Top 24? Luke will deliver the news…tomorrow! Ah, yes. It’s a cliffhanger and we will no learn the fate of Casey or Alanis until Monday night’s episode. That’s a wrap for tonight!