Grace Kinstler (‘American Idol’) eliminated in 3rd place: ‘I am in shock,’ says Lionel Richie

Heading into Sunday’s final episode of “American Idol” Season 19, Grace Kinstler was the odds-on favorite to win. This 20-year-old soul singer from Illinois was eliminated midway through the three-hour finale when Chayce Beckham and Willie Spence both advanced to the Top 2 based on America’s live coast-to-coast votes. “Let us hear it for this amazing woman on our stage,” said host Ryan Seacrest as the audience could be heard gasping.

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The three judges — Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie — appeared gobsmacked at the results of the vote. When the reality TV show returned from a commercial break, Ryan checked in with them at the judges’ table. “I am in shock,” Lionel proclaimed. “I don’t know what I was expecting, but to lose any of those three is ridiculous.”

Grace performed three tunes during the first hour of the show, all while America was voting live for their favorite artist. They were: “All by Myself” as her judges’ choice, “I Have Nothing” as her hometown song and “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” as her reprisal song. At one point, Katy urged viewers to cast their votes for Grace, saying if they didn’t vote they weren’t allowed to complain later on Twitter.

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Just last week, Grace released her new single, “Love Someone” (listen right here) and earned major buzz for its Kelly Clarkson vibes. Grace originally went viral on “Idol” with her audition of “Natural Woman” by Aretha Franklin. She easily received a golden ticket to Hollywood Week, where she took on “10 Seconds” for the genre challenge, “Grenade” as her duet with Alyssa Wray and “Father” as her showstopper.

When she hit the big stage, Grace sang “Queen” as her solo song and “Midnight Train to Georgia” as her celebrity duet with Joss Stone. Her live show performances included “Elastic Heart” (Top 16), “Dangerous Woman” (Top 12 live reveal), “Happy” (Oscar week), “Into the Unknown” (Disney week), “Fix You” (Coldplay song), “When We Were Young” (Mother’s Day song), and “Love Someone,” “A Moment Like This” and “Father” (Top 4 week).

Will you miss Grace on “American Idol”? Sound off down in the comments section.

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