'American Idol 6' wraps audition rounds, reveals Top 24 semifinalists
By Steve Rogers, 02/15/2007
After four weeks of open audition broadcasts and two more episodes that gave viewers a look at the competition's Hollywood round, last night's American Idol 6 broadcast ended with the mega-hit Fox reality show finally revealing the identities of this season's Top 24 semifinalists.
Instead, Idol 6's Top 24 group has a distinct West Coast feel, with nine of the semifinalists calling either California or Washington state home. Washington's strong representation (three of the semifinalists call it home) seems particularly ironic given the state also played host to Idol 6's Seattle open auditions -- an audition stop that Idol's judges and producers repeatedly claimed to have brought out the show's worst talent ever.
Idol's sixth season Top 24 group is also older than previous seasons. Only three of this season's group are teenagers, and half of the 24 semifinalists are 25 or older. Three semifinalists have already turned 29 since last summer's auditions which required contestants to be between the ages of 16 and 28, and three more are currently 28. Unlike last season, there are no 16-year-old semifinalists.
With the selection broadcasts now finally over, American Idol 6's weekly performance shows will now begin the three-week process in which home viewers will determine the identities of the show's Top 12 finalists.
Using the same Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday broadcast schedule that last season's American Idol 5 utilized, American Idol 6's twelve male semifinalists will perform in a special two-hour broadcast on Tuesday, February 20, after which the show's viewers will finally receive their own chance to cast votes for their sixth season favorites.
Idol 6's twelve female semifinalists will follow with another two-hour performance show on Wednesday night, after which Fox will air a special Thursday 8-9PM ET/PT live results show -- a move that will pit the broadcast against CBS' Survivor: Fiji -- that will eliminate two men and two women from the competition.
The following two weeks will continue the same thrice-weekly format (with the performance shows shrinking to 90-minutes and then 60-minutes as additional semifinalists are cut), and end with a live one-hour results show broadcast on Thursday, March 8 at 8PM ET/PT that will reveal American Idol 6's Top 12 finalists.
Once the finals begin, American Idol will settle back into its usual broadcast schedule, with the show's performance shows airing Tuesdays at 8PM ET/PT and its half-hour results shows airing Wednesdays at 9PM ET/PT.
American Idol 6's twelve male semifinalists (listed along with their Fox-issued biographies) are:
Brandon is from North Hollywood, CA, but spent six years in Dallas. He has been singing for as long as he can remember. He works as a voice coach, wedding singer and background singer. His mother is a published songwriter.
Alaina currently lives in West Hollywood, CA, and has been singing all her life. Her favorite artist is Mariah Carey. She has been pursuing a career in music but almost gave up her dream until she made it on American Idol.
Antonella is from Point Pleasant, NJ, She attends Catholic University in Washington, DC, pursuing an architecture degree. She began singing in sixth grade and once toured with the Monmouth Conservatory of Music in England.
Amy currently lives in Federal Way, WA. She has been singing since she was a small child and attended the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City. She is fluent in German and lived in Germany for three years.
Nicole currently lives in Philadelphia, PA, where she is a vocal major at the University of the Arts. She began taking voice lessons when she was 12 years old.
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