Like I said, I heard about this opening last year, and was pretty impressed that they managed to get every single American Idol winner (and many of the other contestants) to attend the grand opening. I heard reports and understood it was a pretty neat show, so when we made our vacation plans, I decided to go for it. Now, my history with auditioning for American Idol is pretty disappointing, but since there were no extended episodes of auditions, and as such, no trainwreck singers let through merely for the sake of ratings, I thought it might be fun to give it a try. Of course, I tried to have zero expectations at getting through, butIhopedIwouldanyway. I did some research online and found out a little information. They do four-five regular shows each day featuring guests who auditioned throughout that very same day, and the winners for each show appear at the finale that evening, and the winner of that round would get a Golden Ticket, entitling them to skip to the front of the line at any city's actual audition for the show. I hoped to get cast in the first place, and then I thought it would be great to sing again in the evening show, but seriously, that would have been totally satisfactory for me. Outside the attraction they have Cast Members holding a sheet with a couple hundred songs to choose from and a good amount of basic information for those hoping to audition. I was told later that on some days the park is less crowded but they get hundreds of auditions, and on other days, the park is full to capacity, and they don't get too many hopefuls in the audition rooms. When I went to audition that morning, things were pretty quiet, but I could hear people singing and auditioning and practicing behind closed doors.
|Crossing my fingers! I've had bad luck with AI auditions in the past, so I'm a little stitious.|
|I'm through to the next round! I have a golden ticket!|
|Practicing in the Red Room.|
|I suddenly have the strangest desire for a Coke.|
|These were the girls I competed with in round 1. They were like 17.|
|Apparently this lady has worked with a lot of former American Idol contestants.|
I was a little nervous that the girls who were in my round were there with a high school group (which counts for a lot of votes), but in the end I evidently garnered the majority of them and was invited to return that evening for the finale!
The camera operator would probably like it to be made mention that she was recording clandestinely from her lap, and the camera shifts downward at one point because they were pointing out to her in the audience and she didn't want to draw attention to the fact that she was recording. The shakes are also explained by her clapping at certain points. When I asked, they said they technically have to say they disallow video recording or photography, but they don't really enforce it. I'm glad I because I desperately wanted this recorded, so, much thanks to Julie for being a great photographer and catching the key moments on bandit video. :D
|I'm going to the finals!!!|
|It's hard to tell, but I'm doing the same pose as the square on the park map cover.|
So we went around the park for a few hours and came back that evening for the finale show. Presumably to generate interest and fill the audience seats, they had given us some swag that loudly proclaimed we had auditioned and were performing on the show. A few people came up to me and said they really liked me and had voted for me and I said "Much thanks, and come back tonight and vote again!" There were five singers this time, and the styles of music represented were very different. The other songs were "Hit Me with Your Best Shot," "Achy, Breaky Heart," "Big Girls Don't Cry" and "Holding Out for a Hero." There was a different host and different judges, but the rest of it was pretty much the same, but a little more exciting.
When it came time to reveal the results, they even drew it out as long as possible, very Seacrest indeed. They called two people forward and eventually told them their "journey" ends here, then they called down two more (self included) and said we were moving on. So it was down to me and the girl who sang after I did, and after a good deal more stalling, she was named the winner!
She was cute and fun and enthusiastic and SO excited. She was really good, and so into it, and she will actually use the Golden Ticket, so I'm really glad she won.
|The winner is announced! She looks like she just finished an Olympics gymnastics routine.|
It was amazing all in all, and I'm so glad Julie was patient and let me spend so much time of our day doing this! I think my until now insatiable yen to be on American Idol is actually more or less fulfilled.
|My biggest fan! And hers.|