Geena Fontanella (age 27) a musician from Los Angeles, California, sang her original song “Don’t Want You Back” during the Auditions round of American Idol 2020 (Season 18).
A Katy Perry fan since she was a kid, Geena was excited to perform in front of her idol and see what she thinks. She had been to all of Katy Perry’s shows and said Katy is one of her major influences. Like her idol Katy, Geena said she started music in the church.
When she performed, Geena managed to let the judges sing along the chorus with her.
The American Idol judges were pleased with Geena’s song, voice, and personality and gave her three “Yes” votes and a Golden Ticket to Hollywood.
Katy asked Geena to take off her hat after her performance and said she looked great without it. She commented, “I think you’re very personable. I think you have a good voice. I think that when you go (sings a high note), you know, and you go into that part, it’s really appealing and I like what your voice sounds like when it’s in that register. I just wanted it to get a little bit more interesting before it goes there.”
Luke Bryan said, “I think in the verses you had a really, really cool sound. Some of the stuff in the course was a little safe in my opinion. Maybe just dig in a little more.”
Lionel Richie commented, “I love the character. You walk out on stage and we want to know you immediately. And then you open your mouth and you have a hook and we know it. When you say, come on, sing along, we can sing it back to you. That’s the test of a song.”
The judges unanimously voted “Yes” to Geena Fontanella and they handed her a Golden Ticket to Hollywood.
In the post-audition interview, Geena said. “Those people have sold out stadiums and then they’re singing my song. That’s so weird. They’re so crazy. I think Katy was a little bit on the fence, but I got three “yeses”, that’s all that matters.”
American Idol Season 18 premiered at 8PM, February 16, 2020 on ABC television and will air Sundays at 8/7c. Ryan Seacrest continues his role as the show’s host and Bobby Bones returns as the in-house mentor. Despite budget cuts, Katy Perry, Luke Bryan, and Lionel Richie come back as judges for their third season of the series.
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