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'American Idol' ousts five Top 20 male contestants after 10 guys perform for judges


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 02/22/2013 

American Idol ousted five of the Top 20 twelfth-season male contestants -- and Top 40 overall -- during Thursday night's Fox broadcast of the initial Las Vegas Round eliminations.

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Five male contestants were sent home from American Idol's twelfth season after 10 of the 20 remaining men took the stage and performed any song of their choice in any genre for judges Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, Keith Urban, and Randy Jackson.

After hearing from all the singers, the judges had to determine which guys should be ousted from the competition, and if the vote ended in a 2-2 tie, music producer Jimmy Iovine would have the final say and serve as the tie-breaking vote.
 
The five men cut following the "sudden death round" in Las Vegas were Kevin Harris, a 28-year-old from Montgomery, AL; Josh "J'DA" Davila, a 27-year-old from Chicago, IL; Johnny Keyser, a 24-year-old from Pompano Beach, FL; Jimmy Smith, a 25-year-old from Waynesboro, TN; and Chris Watson, a 25-year-old from Fords, NJ.

The five male contestants who made it into the season's Top 10 guys and Top 20 semifinalists overall were Charlie Askew, a 17-year-old from Little Rock, AR; Curtis Finch Jr., a 24-year-old from St. Louis, MO; Paul Jolley, a 22-year-old from Palmersville, TN; Elijah Liu, an 18-year-old from Rowland Heights, CA; and Devin Velez, an 18-year-old from Chicago, IL.

The five guys now join the five female contestants who advanced during Wednesday night's initial Las Vegas Round performance show -- Kree Harrison, Amber Holcomb, Adriana Latonio, Angela Miller, and Tenna Torres -- in American Idol's Top 20 twelfth-season semifinalists.

Jolley's fate was determined by Iovine, who said that although he oversang the song and got a little too theatrical at moments, he had talent and deserved another chance to improve on those performance issues.

The Las Vegas Round will continue for two more episodes until the phase ends on Thursday, February 28. Similar to last night's broadcast, each of the two episodes to come will feature a group of 10 contestants performing and then the judges eliminating five hopefuls.

The remaining set of 10 women will be shown during next Wednesday night's episode, while the remaining 10 men will be featured singing for survival next Thursday night. The Las Vegas Round will therefore conclude with 20 semifinalists moving on.

Once those 20 semifinalists are all revealed, similar to last season, American Idol will air back-to-back live semifinals performance shows which will feature the first group of 10 semifinalists on Tuesday, March 5 and the second group of 10 semifinalists on Wednesday, March 6. A live results show announcing the season's finalists will then air on Thursday, March 7.

The five male and five female semifinalists who receive the most home viewer votes will automatically advance to Idol's twelfth-season finals. In a departure from last season, the judges will not have the opportunity to each select a "Wild Card" pick to join America's chosen Top 10.   

Once the finalists are determined, American Idol's first twelfth-season performance show will then air on Wednesday, March 13 and feature the finalists singing for home viewer votes. One finalist will then be eliminated the following night during the season's first live elimination results show.



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