At long last, American Idol is down to the top 36! While we were both relieved and disappointed to see some people go during the night's cuts, and shocked to see others stay (Tatiana Del Toro anyone?), it's anyone's guess as to who can impress the judges in the rounds to come.
Note: American Idol producers released the following statement regarding Joanna Pacitti: "It has been determined that Joanna Pacitti is ineligible to continue in the competition. American Idol contestant Felicia Barton has replaced Ms. Pacitti as part of the Top 36."
Adam Lambert – While he clearly can sing ( he was in the cast of the musical Wicked before auditioning for American Idol), is he too "theatrical" to make it past the top 36?
Alex Wagner-Trugman – He’s quirky and unusual, and just screaming for a good American Idol make-over… but he’s got the chops to do well if he can only loosen up a bit.
Alexis Grace – She’s small, soulful and a single mother, but it’s her talent that’s gotten her this far…let’s see how she holds up in the top 36!
Allison Iraheta – She’s only 16, but she’s bilingual and has lots of singing experience, so she’s not as sugarcoated as the other young contestants, and she certainly doesn’t sing like it. We’re looking forward to seeing her mad performing skills.
Ann Marie Boskovich – The judges must be happy they let her through the first round after sending her out to change her look… let’s see how Ann Marie holds up without the judges guidance.
Arianna Afsar – She’s a young one with a sweet smile, and one can’t help but get the impression that she’s a bit sheltered and naive, but her voice is far beyond her years – we can only hope that she won’t crack under the pressure.
Brent Keith – He’s a mix of rock and country twang, but does he have the ‘it’ factor to make the top 12?
Danny Gokey – He sings from the heart and from personal heartache - everyone is rooting for him and hoping that he might make up for the fact that his friend Jamal was robbed of a 36 spot.
Casey Carlson – She’s a looker, and yes your guy friends have already Googled her bikini clad on the Internet, but can she win the audience over with her vocal talent?
Felicia Barton – Not that much is known, but she comes in to steal the last spot after Joanna Pacitti becomes ineligible to continue…here’s hoping she’s a keeper.
Jackie Tohn – She’s quirky, fun, very comfortable on stage and we haven’t seen her have one dramatic meltdown…she’s a refreshing addition to the top 36.
Jasmine Murray – Another charming young contestant with an unbelievable voice…but does she have enough life experience to touch America’s hearts?
Jeanine Vailes – We haven’t even heard her sing yet, so let’s hope the producers of American Idol have left us something to look forward to.
Jesse Langseth – She sang for her survival in the top fifty, plus she’s the sister of Grammy winner Johnny Lang, so if she can lip curl half as well as he can, she’s a force to be reckoned with.
Jorge Nunez – He’s got a Ricky Martin thing going on and a lot of personality; it should be interesting to see how he channels that in the top 36.
Ju’Not Joyner – He’s a likeable enough guy, but he needs to do something to make himself stand out from the crowd.
Kai Kalama – His voice has been going out on him and it’s only the fourth week – he could be great, and the top 36 is his opportunity to perform or get sent packing.
Kendall Beard – Her country twang and good looks have the judges wanting to see more, and us too, considering we’ve barely seen her!
Kristen Mcnamara – She’s survived some unfortunate group pairings and is ready to prove herself as an individual, but she needs to get her look up to par with her voice.
Kris Allen – We’ve barely seen anything from him, so he’s yet another hidden talent…
Lil Rounds – Who could forget when Randy called her a mix between Mary J. Blige and Fantasia and Simon gave her a standing ovation? She’s an early favorite with the judges, and for obvious reasons…
Matt Breitzke – He’s blue collar worker with a family behind him, but he hasn’t quite won over the judges; his top 36 performance could be his make or break chance.
Megan Corkrey – She’s got an usual voice, and is cute as heck, and I appreciated the classic song she sang in her audition, but is her voice compatible with a modern sound?
Matt Giraud – He’s the enthusiastic dueling piano player ready to duel with the rest of the top 36! Sorry, I couldn’t resist…
Michael Sarver – He’s out to make a difference with his family, and his job as a roughneck is the fifth most dangerous job in the world…. It seems like the pressure of this competition won’t phase him.
Mishavonna Henson – We still haven’t seen her sing… what do you have up your sleeve American Idol?
Nathaniel Marshall – It’s safe to say that he’s been a bit of a drama queen, and done his fair share of crying…can he survive through the vigorous rounds to come?
Nick Mitchell aka Norman Gentle – Can it be? Have his crazy antics gotten him this far? Who can forget his alter ego, Norman Gentle? Are the judges just keeping him around to give everyone a laugh?
Ricky Braddy – Who? I guess we’ll find out soon enough!
Scott Macintyre – He’s an inspiration and has overcome his physical limitations to be a true performer and musician. His emotional performances with his piano are truly something to look forward to.
Stephen Fowler – He forgot his lyrics in the fourth round, but he squeaked into the top 36…let’s see if his nerves get the best of him.
Stevie Wright – Another 16 year old with mad singing skills…let’s see if she can live up to her namesake, Stevie Nicks.
Tatiana Del Toro – Most fans are a bit surprised to see that she has made it this far…so how far will she last? One can’t help but wonder if the judges are keeping her around for a surefire epic farewell…the tears! The shrieking!
Taylor Vaifanua – As the judges keep saying, “she can sing”… so let’s look forward to some exciting performances from her in the top 36.
Von Smith – One always feels like he is on the verge of a nervous breakdown, and it makes it uncomfortable to watch… hopefully he can pull himself together in the rounds to come.
What do you think of the final 36? Who was robbed? Who rightfully earned their spot?