American Idol (season 1)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - View original article

American Idol: The Search for a Superstar
Season 1
Broadcast fromJune 11, 2002 – September 4, 2002
JudgesPaula Abdul
Simon Cowell
Randy Jackson
Host(s)Brian Dunkleman
Ryan Seacrest
BroadcasterFox
Finals venueKodak Theatre
Winner:
Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson 57th Presidential Inauguration-cropped.jpg
Clarkson at the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C.
OriginBurleson, Texas, U.S.
Song"A Moment Like This"
Genre(s)Pop, pop rock
Runner-up
Justin Guarini
Chronology
  2002
 
Jump to: navigation, search
American Idol: The Search for a Superstar
Season 1
Broadcast fromJune 11, 2002 – September 4, 2002
JudgesPaula Abdul
Simon Cowell
Randy Jackson
Host(s)Brian Dunkleman
Ryan Seacrest
BroadcasterFox
Finals venueKodak Theatre
Winner:
Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson 57th Presidential Inauguration-cropped.jpg
Clarkson at the 57th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C.
OriginBurleson, Texas, U.S.
Song"A Moment Like This"
Genre(s)Pop, pop rock
Runner-up
Justin Guarini
Chronology
  2002

The first season of American Idol premiered on June 11, 2002 (under the full title American Idol: The Search for a Superstar) and continued until September 4, 2002. It was won by Kelly Clarkson. This season was co-hosted by Ryan Seacrest and Brian Dunkleman, the latter of whom left the show after the season ended.

The winner, Kelly Clarkson, signed with RCA Records, the label in partnership with American Idol's 19 Entertainment. Immediately post-finale, Clarkson released two singles, including the coronation song, "A Moment Like This". "A Moment Like This" went on to break a thirty-eight-year-old record held by The Beatles for a song's biggest leap to number one on the Billboard Hot 100. It jumped up from number fifty-two to number one in just one week. She held that record for five years but she reclaimed that record back in 2009 with her hit single "My Life Would Suck Without You" when it jumped up from number ninety-seven to number one. Clarkson has enjoyed a successful recording career since winning, with multiple-platinum albums, a number of Top 10 hit singles and three Grammy Awards. Runner-up Justin Guarini also signed with RCA Records, eventually debuting an album in 2003 after the conclusion of season 2. RCA dropped him shortly after its debut. In addition to Clarkson and Guarini, also signed were Nikki McKibbin, Tamyra Gray, R. J. Helton, and Christina Christian.

After the finale, a special show in Las Vegas was also shown in September 23, 2002 where all 30 of the contestants who made the judges' initial cut performed during in a two-hour concert.

The show inspired a 2003 musical film, From Justin to Kelly, featuring Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini.

Regional auditions[edit]

Auditions were held in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, and Seattle in the spring of 2002,[1] and around 10,000 attended the auditions.

Episode Air DateAudition CityDateAudition VenuesGolden Tickets
June 11, 2002Los Angeles, CaliforniaApril 20–22, 2002Westin Bonaventure Hotel31
Seattle, WashingtonApril 23–25, 2002Hyatt Regency Hotel10
Chicago, IllinoisApril 26–28, 2002Congress Plaza Hotel[2]23
New York City, New YorkApril 29-May 1, 2002Millenium Hilton Hotel[3]25
Atlanta, GeorgiaMay 3–5, 2002AmericasMart[4]/
Callanwolde Fine Arts Center
15
Dallas, TexasMay 5–7, 2002Wyndham Anatole Hotel[5]11
Miami, FloridaMay 11, 2002Fontainebleau Hilton[6]6
Total Tickets to Hollywood121

One of the more prominent auditioners this season was Tamika Bush who objected to the judges' critiques and their pronunciation of her name. She was later invited back to critique the contestants' semifinal performance. Kristin Holt who auditioned in Dallas was put through to the Hollywood rounds, but in her rush to embrace the judges, fell and slipped under the judges' table.

Kelly Clarkson was notable for being largely absent in the audition episode, and she remains the only winner whose audition was not aired in the original broadcast. The other top 10 finalists in Season 1 whose audition were not shown were Nikki McKibbin and EJ Day.

Structure of auditions[edit]

There are usually three stages in the audition process in every season, the first stage being the open call audition advertised. In this stage those auditioning each sings briefly in groups of five in front of selectors, though some may be asked to sing further. Most of those who attended are eliminated at this stage with only a limited number of auditioners selected to proceed further. In the second round they sing in front the executive producers and more are eliminated. In some later years a further round may be added before this round of audition. In the last round those who survive the first two stage sing in front of the judges and this is the audition shown on television. Those who gain at least two yeses from the three judges then receive a golden ticket to Hollywood.

In the first season, the second and third stage of the audition may take place within a single day, but in the following seasons each stage of the audition may take place on separate days. The initial audition venue need not necessarily be the final audition venue in front of the judges, and in later seasons, up to three separate venues may be used for the auditions in each city. The venues and dates of the second audition in front of the producers are not specifically listed in these pages. In the early seasons, the entire audition process in each city took place within a relatively short span of time, 3 days in the case of Season 1, but became progressively extended in later seasons until the callback date may be many weeks after the initial auditions.

Hollywood week[edit]

The Hollywood week rounds were held in Pasadena Civic Center where 121 contestants competed for a place in the finals. The contestants first emerged on stage in groups of 9 or 10 but performed solo unaccompanied, and those who did not impress the judges were cut after the group finished their individual performances. 65 were selected to proceed on to the next round. The singers were expected to learn their songs that night and perform the next day in groups of three. The girls and boys were separated and given crash course to learn their song, which was Dionne Warwick's "I Say a Little Prayer" for the girls and "For Once in My Life" for the boys. Many however frequently forgot the lyrics. Again those who failed to impress were cut immediately after their performance. 45 made it to the next round, and the 20 cut were given their last chance to voice their opinion to the judges before leaving.

In the final round, the remaining 45 were given new songs to learn and each performed solo and a cappella. 30 contestants would be chosen after this round. In this round Justin Guarini impressed the judges and his fellow contestants alike. The Top 15 were first announced, the judges then select 15 more out of the remaining 30. The 30 were split into two groups and the judges then go to each group to announce the chosen group.

Delano Cagnolatti was initially amongst those announced as the Top 30, but he was later disqualified for falsifying his age,[7] and became the first person to be disqualified on American Idol. He was replaced by EJay Day.

Semi-finals[edit]

The 30 contestants who reached this stage in this season were referred to in the show as the finalists.

Before their performance, the contestants took part in intensive music work shop where they were given vocal coaching by Debra Byrd and advice by stylists. The contestants were held in the Red Room before they each emerged to perform solo with piano accompaniment. There was no studio audience at this stage and the performance was pre-taped. The audience voted after each round of performance, and the results of the vote were announced the next day live. A total of 3.3 million votes were cast in the first week of voting.[8]

Below are the three semi-final groups with contestants listed in their performance order. In each group, three people advanced to the next round, based on votes by the viewers.

Group 1[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Tamyra Gray"And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" (Jennifer Holliday)Advanced
2Jim Verraros"When I Fall in Love" (Doris Day)Advanced
3Adriel Herrera"I'll Be" (Edwin McCain)Eliminated
4Rodesia Eaves"Daydream Believer" (The Monkees)Eliminated
5Natalie Burge"Crazy" (Willie Nelson)Eliminated
6Brad Estrin"Just Once" (James Ingram)Eliminated
7Ryan Starr"The Frim-Fram Sauce" (Nat King Cole)Advanced
8Justinn Waddell"When a Man Loves a Woman" (Percy Sledge)Eliminated
9Kelli Glover"I Will Always Love You" (Dolly Parton)Wild Card
10Christopher Aaron"Still in Love" (Brian McKnight)Wild Card

Group 2[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Alexis Lopez"I Will Survive" (Gloria Gaynor)Wild Card
2Gil Sinuet"Ribbon in the Sky" (Stevie Wonder)Eliminated
3Angela Peel"Run to You" (Whitney Houston)Wild Card
4A. J. Gil"All or Nothing" (O-Town)Advanced
5Tenia Taylor"Greatest Love of All" (George Benson)Eliminated
6Alexandra Bachelier"Save the Best for Last" (Vanessa Williams)Eliminated
7Jazmin Lowery"You Put a Move on My Heart" (Tamia)Eliminated
8Jamar"Careless Whisper" (Wham!)Eliminated
9Kelly Clarkson"Respect" (Otis Redding)Advanced
10Justin Guarini"Ribbon in the Sky" (Stevie Wonder)Advanced

Group 3[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1R. J. Helton"I'll Be There" (The Jackson 5)Wild Card
2Kristin Holt"Fallin'" (Alicia Keys)Eliminated
3Mark Scott"My Girl" (The Temptations)Eliminated
4Nikki McKibbin"Total Eclipse of the Heart" (Bonnie Tyler)Advanced
5Christopher Badano"I Swear" (John Michael Montgomery)Eliminated
6Melanie Sanders"And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" (Jennifer Holliday)Eliminated
7EJay Day"I'll Be" (Edwin McCain)Advanced
8Tanesha Ross"Until You Come Back to Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do)" (Aretha Franklin)Eliminated
9Khaleef Chiles"My Cherie Amour" (Stevie Wonder)Eliminated
10Christina Christian"At Last" (Glenn Miller and his Orchestra)Advanced

Wild Card Round[edit]

Following those nine singers advancing, five of the remaining 21 semi-finalists were selected by the judges to compete in the Wild Card round. Following another performance by each Wild Card contender, the judges selected one contestant to advance to the final group of 10.

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Kelli Glover"How Am I Supposed to Live Without You" (Laura Branigan)Eliminated
2Christopher Aaron"On Bended Knee" (Boyz II Men)Eliminated
3Alexis Lopez"Saving All My Love for You" (Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr.)Eliminated
4R. J. Helton"Lately" (Stevie Wonder)Advanced
5Angela Peel"As We Lay" (Shirley Murdock)Eliminated

Top 10 Finalists[edit]

Back - EJay Day, R. J. Helton, A. J. Gil
Middle - Tamyra Gray, Kelly Clarkson, Ryan Starr
Front - Justin Guarini, Nikki McKibbin, Christina Christian, Jim Verraros

Finals[edit]

The finals were broadcast live, in front of a live studio audience. The finals lasted for eight weeks, each finalist performed a song or songs selected from a weekly theme. During the first few weeks, contestants sang one song each. By the top four week, the contestants sang two songs each, and in the finale the two finalists performed three songs apiece.

The results of public vote were revealed in the night following the performance night in the results show. The three or two contestants in the later rounds who received the lowest number of votes were typically called the Bottom Three or Two. From the bottom three, one contestant was sent to safety so that two contestants remained and finally the contestant who received the lowest amount of votes was eliminated from the competition. A farewell video with montage of the eliminated contestant is shown.

This season largely set the pattern for later seasons, such as group performance by the contestants during the result shows, home town visits for the top 3, and performing the songs for the top 2 that would be released immediately after the finale. In this season, there are no guest mentor apart from the Burt Bacharach week where the composer helped the contestants prepare their songs.

The finale was between Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini, and Kelly Clarkson was declared the winner with 58% out of 15.5 million votes cast.[9] Over 110 million votes were cast over the entire season.[8]

A television special from Las Vegas starring the top thirty-two finalists aired later, a thirty date tour with the top ten followed, as did the box office bomb movie titled From Justin to Kelly.

Top 10 – Motown[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Ryan Starr"If You Really Love Me" (Stevie Wonder)Safe
2R. J. Helton"I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)" (The Four Tops)Safe
3Nikki McKibbin"Ben" (Michael Jackson)Bottom 3
4EJay Day"My Girl" (The Temptations)Eliminated
5Tamyra Gray"Touch Me in the Morning" (Diana Ross)Safe
6Justin Guarini"For Once in My Life" (Jean DuShon)Safe
7Jim Verraros"Easy" (The Commodores)Eliminated
8Kelly Clarkson"You're All I Need to Get By" (Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell)Safe
9A. J. Gil"My Cherie Amour" (Stevie Wonder)Safe
10Christina Christian"Ain't No Mountain High Enough" (Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell)Safe

Top 8 – 1960s[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1R. J. Helton"Under the Boardwalk" (The Drifters)Safe
2Tamyra Gray"A Fool in Love" (Ike & Tina Turner)Safe
3Nikki McKibbin"Piece of My Heart" (Erma Franklin)Safe
4A. J. Gil"How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You)" (Marvin Gaye)Eliminated
5Kelly Clarkson"(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" (Aretha Franklin)Safe
6Christina Christian"When a Man Loves a Woman" (Percy Sledge)Bottom 3
7Justin Guarini"Sunny" (Mieko Hirota)Safe
8Ryan Starr"You Really Got Me" (The Kinks)Bottom 2

Top 7 – 1970s[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Nikki McKibbin"Heartbreaker" (Pat Benatar)Bottom 3
2Ryan Starr"Last Dance" (Donna Summer)Eliminated
3Christina Christian"Ain't No Sunshine" (Bill Withers)Safe
4Justin Guarini"Someday We'll All Be Free" (Donny Hathaway)Bottom 2
5Kelly Clarkson"Don't Play That Song (You Lied)" (Ben E. King)Safe
6R. J. Helton"Superstition" (Stevie Wonder)Safe
7Tamyra Gray"If I Were Your Woman" (Gladys Knight & the Pips)Safe

Top 6 – Big Band[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Tamyra Gray"Minnie the Moocher" (Cab Calloway)Safe
2Justin Guarini"Route 66" (Nat King Cole)Safe
3Nikki McKibbin"Hard-Hearted Hannah" (Dolly Kay)Bottom 3
4Christina Christian"The Glory of Love" (Benny Goodman And His Orchestra)Eliminated
5R. J. Helton"I Won't Dance" (Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers)Bottom 2
6Kelly Clarkson"Stuff Like That There" (Betty Hutton)Safe

Top 5 – Burt Bacharach Love Songs[edit]

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Kelly Clarkson"Walk On By" (Dionne Warwick)Safe
2R. J. Helton"Arthur's Theme (Best That You Can Do)" (Christopher Cross)Eliminated
3Tamyra Gray"A House is Not a Home" (Dionne Warwick)Safe
4Justin Guarini"The Look of Love" (Dusty Springfield)Safe
5Nikki McKibbin"(There's) Always Something There to Remind Me" (Lou Johnson)Bottom 2

Top 4 – 1980/1990s[edit]

Each contestant sang two songs.

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Tamyra Gray"New Attitude" (Patti LaBelle)Eliminated
2Nikki McKibbin"Mary Jane" (Alanis Morissette)Bottom 2
3Kelly Clarkson"It's Raining Men" (The Weather Girls)Safe
4Justin Guarini"Get Here" (Brenda Russell)Safe
5Tamyra Gray"Feel the Fire" (Stephanie Mills)Eliminated
6Nikki McKibbin"I'm the Only One" (Melissa Etheridge)Bottom 2
7Kelly Clarkson"I Surrender" (Celine Dion)Safe
8Justin Guarini"P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)" (Michael Jackson)Safe

Top 3 – Contestant's choice & Judges' choice[edit]

Each contestant sang two songs.

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Nikki McKibbin"Edge of Seventeen" (Stevie Nicks)Eliminated
2Justin Guarini"Let's Stay Together" (Al Green)Safe
3Kelly Clarkson"Think Twice" (Celine Dion)Safe
4Nikki McKibbin"Black Velvet" (Alannah Myles)Eliminated
5Justin Guarini"Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" (Elton John)Safe
6Kelly Clarkson"Without You" (Badfinger)Safe

The top 3 each reprised their performances -

Top 2 – Finale[edit]

Each contestant sang three songs.

OrderContestantSong (original artist)Result
1Justin Guarini"Before Your Love"Runner-Up
2Kelly Clarkson"A Moment Like This"Winner
3Justin Guarini"Get Here" (Brenda Russell)Runner-Up
4Kelly Clarkson"Respect" (Otis Redding)Winner
5Justin Guarini"A Moment Like This"Runner-Up
6Kelly Clarkson"Before Your Love"Winner

Elimination chart[edit]

Top 30Wild CardTop 10Winner
Did Not PerformSafeSafe FirstSafe LastEliminated
Stage:Semi-finalsWild CardFinals
Week:6/126/196/267/37/177/247/318/78/148/218/289/4
PlaceContestantResult
1Kelly Clarkson2ndWinner
2Justin Guarini1stBottom 2Runner-Up
3Nikki McKibbin2ndBottom 3Bottom 3Bottom 3Bottom 2Bottom 2Elim
4Tamyra Gray1stElim
5R.J. HeltonWild CardTop 10Bottom 2Elim
6Christina Christian1stBottom 3Elim
7Ryan Starr2ndBottom 2Elim
8A.J. Gil3rdElim
9–10Jim Verraros3rdElim
EJay Day3rd
Wild
Card
Chris AaronWild CardElim
Kelli GloverWild Card
Alexis LopezWild Card
Angela J. PeelWild Card
Semi-
Final 3
Christopher BadanoElim
Khaleef Chiles
Kristin Holt
Melanie Sanders
Mark Scott
Tanesha Ross
Semi-
Final 2
Alexandra BachelierElim
Jamar
Jazmin Lowery
Gil Sinuet
Tenia Taylor
Semi-
Final 1
Natalie BurgeElim
Rodesia Eaves
Brad Estrin
Adriel Herrera
Justinn Waddell

Controversy[edit]

It was revealed during the season that around 100 phone-phreak hackers with power-dialing hardware and software were able to place as many as 10,000 votes a night from a single phone line with the touch of a button.[10] However, FremantleMedia, which produces the show, contended that the hackers have had 'statistically insignificant' effect on the vote. Simon Cowell also insisted that Tamyra Gray's unexpected ouster from the show only strengthened the producers' contention that the voting was fair.[11] Nevertheless concerns were raised about possible unfairness in the situation of a tight vote.[12] Ken Warwick later said in Season 5 that equipment was put in place afterwards to address this issue but it has never detected such a problem since.[13]

Idol contestants were reported to having to sign a 'phone book-thick' contract that gives producers 'sole discretion' to pick the winners and change the rules.[14] Producer Nigel Lythgoe however said that the contracts had to anticipate every possible situation, and was not intended to rig the show in favor of any contestant.

Controversy erupted when the winner of Season 1, Kelly Clarkson, was invited to sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" in a deal arranged by her then management company, 19 Entertainment, at a special commemoration for the first anniversary of 9/11 attacks at Washington's Lincoln Memorial. Some critics suggested that Clarkson's appearance would turn a somber occasion of national mourning into a "giant promotional opportunity".[15] Kelly Clarkson herself considered withdrawing from the commemoration, saying "I think it is a bad idea ... If anybody thinks I'm trying to market anything, well, that's awful." and added "I am not going to do it."[16] She was however unable to withdraw from the event.

US Nielsen ratings[edit]

Season one of American Idol was a surprise summer hit show of 2002 and had an average viewership of 12.7 million per episode.[17] It was the summer’s highest-rated show in the 18/49 demographic.[18]

Episode list
ShowEpisodeAir dateWeek
rank
Rating/Share18-49
rating
Viewers
(millions)
1"Auditions"[19]June 11, 2002126.1 / 114.89.85
2"Hollywood Week"[19]June 12, 200266.9 / 125.211.24
3"Top 30: Group 1"[20]June 18, 200266.2 / 115.210.30
4"Top 30: Group 1 results"[20]June 19, 2002225.8 / 104.79.47
5"Top 30: Group 2"[21]June 25, 2002115.5 / 94.59.08
6"Top 30: Group 2 results"[21]June 26, 2002175.3 / 94.28.53
7"Top 30: Group 3"[22]July 2, 200275.9 / 105.310.28
8"Top 30: Group 3 results"[23]July 3, 2002264.4 / 87.5
9"Wildcard Show"[24]July 10, 2002145.4 / 94.18.97
10"Top 10 Perform"[25]July 16, 200266.0 / 115.310.28
11"Top 10 Results"[25]July 17, 2002125.5 / 94.89.39
12"Top 8 Finalists"[26]July 23, 200276.6 / 115.510.77
13"Top 8 Results"[26]July 24, 2002165.7 / 104.49.13
14"Top 7 Finalists"[27]July 30, 200257.1 / 126.312.20
15"Top 7 Results"[27]July 31, 2002106.2 / 105.010.20
16"Top 6 Finalists"[28]August 6, 200247.0 / 126.212.20
17"Top 6 Results"[28]August 7, 200286.4 / 115.210.82
18"Top 5 Finalists"[29]August 13, 200237.4 / 126.212.67
19"Top 5 Results"[29]August 14, 200246.9 / 115.712.05
20"Top 4 Finalists"[30]August 20, 200218.8 / 147.915.29
21"Top 4 Results"[30]August 21, 200228.0 / 137.114.10
22"Top 3 Finalists"[31]August 27, 200228.7 / 147.514.98
23"Top 3 Results"[31]August 28, 200219.7 / 168.316.94
24"Top 2 Finalists"[32]September 3, 2002210.5 / 169.318.69
25"Season 1 Finale"[32]September 4, 2002112.6 / 2110.722.77

American Idol Rewind[edit]

Re-edited episodes of American Idol season 1 are now being shown in syndication as American Idol Rewind. The new episodes feature commentary from some of the first season's top 30, including runner-ups Justin Guarini, Jim Verraros, Christina Christian, Nikki McKibbin, Angela Peel, and Kelli Glover. Rewind also showcases footage that was not seen in the initial run of season 1, including Kelly Clarkson's full audition.[33]

Releases[edit]

Minor or independent releases[edit]

(This list does not include pre-Idol releases)

Source:[34]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]